Radicals and electrons

(Polar molecules, Non-polar molecules, etc.)

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Daniel Vo 1B
Posts: 45
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2017 3:00 am

Radicals and electrons

Postby Daniel Vo 1B » Mon Nov 13, 2017 2:19 am

How would we know where to place the lone electron in a radical? Would it always be on the central atom?

Michael Koger 3K
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2017 7:07 am

Re: Radicals and electrons

Postby Michael Koger 3K » Mon Nov 13, 2017 2:27 am

The best way to determine where the lone electron goes in a radical is to compare the number of bonds an atom is capable of forming with the number it actually forms in the molecule. If the latter number is less than the first, then it is very likely that that atom has an unpaired valence electron. Since carbon is capable of forming four bonds, it is often the carrier of the unpaired valence electron in organic radicals. However, any atom that can form multiple bonds is capable of being the carrier of the unpaired valence electron in a molecule. It is important to approach this on a case by case basis.

I hope this helped!

Brigita1D
Posts: 20
Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2017 7:06 am

Re: Radicals and electrons

Postby Brigita1D » Wed Nov 15, 2017 2:25 pm

The best place to put the lone electron in a radical would be on the atom with the lower electronegativity. Atoms with high electronegativity usually fill their octets completely as they get closer to the top right corner of the periodic table.

Jorge Gomez3F
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2017 7:07 am

Re: Radicals and electrons

Postby Jorge Gomez3F » Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:02 pm

I'd say put it on the atom with the lower electronegativity, but also compare how many electrons an atom needs for the octet as well as the formal charge of the entire molecule and how you can achieve that depending on the placement fo the lone electron


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