Polar vs Non-polar

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

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Yazmin Bocanegra 3L
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Polar vs Non-polar

Postby Yazmin Bocanegra 3L » Sun Dec 01, 2019 10:33 pm

Do non-polar molecules have to be symmetrical? Or can molecules be non-polar as long as the forces all around cancel out?

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Re: Polar vs Non-polar

Postby TYun_1C » Sun Dec 01, 2019 10:36 pm

Non polar molecules have dipole moments which are the same magnitude but different directions. Looking at the molecular shapes for non polar molecules, it seems that all of them are symmetrical.

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Re: Polar vs Non-polar

Postby SMIYAZAKI_1B » Sun Dec 01, 2019 10:47 pm

If I have not read your question wrong, the non polar molecules can form as long as the dipole forces can cancel out each other. Therefore, if you can somehow cancel out the force, you can definitely make the molecule non pole and not symmetrical.

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Re: Polar vs Non-polar

Postby Cavalli_1H » Sun Dec 01, 2019 10:59 pm

also, I'm confused because there are some instances where you might have a certain molecule that could be arranged so that the dipoles cancel or do not cancel. how do we know which arrangement is the right one? are dipoles affected by arrangement?

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Re: Polar vs Non-polar

Postby 505316964 » Sun Dec 01, 2019 11:06 pm

If you look at a tetrahedral shape as an example,
It is nonpolar if all the 4 surrounding molecules are the same element because the dipoles cancel out.
The structure is symmetrical.

but, If you have a tetrahedral shape in which the surrounding molecules are different elements, it will be polar.
The shape is still symmetrical, but the elements are different meaning they have different dipole strengths and will not cancel out, making the shape polar.

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