What is s-character of an orbital? (6th ed, 4.43)


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Dhwani Krishnan 1G
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Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:17 am

What is s-character of an orbital? (6th ed, 4.43)

Postby Dhwani Krishnan 1G » Wed Nov 21, 2018 11:22 am

The question reads, "Noting that the bond angle of an sp3 hybridized atom is 109.5 and that of an sp2 hybridized atom is 120, do you expect the bond angle between two hybrid orbitals to increase or decrease as the s-character of the hybrids is increased?"
What is the s-character of a hybrid orbital?

aisteles1G
Posts: 117
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:15 am

Re: What is s-character of an orbital? (6th ed, 4.43)

Postby aisteles1G » Wed Nov 21, 2018 12:07 pm

The s character of an orbital is simply what percentage of s makes up the hybridization, so in sp3 there are 4 orbitals, 1 s and 3 p, so s makes us 25% (1/4) of the hybridization and therefore it has 25% s character and 75% p character. An sp hybridization has 1 s and 1 p, so 50% (1/2) s character. Simply take the number of s you have (will almost always be 1) and divide by the total number of orbitals. So as the number of orbitals increases and s stays at 1, the s character will decrease because the denominator increases. Hope this helps!


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