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I know that the more polarizable species are, the stronger the nucleophile is, but I'm not too sure about the general trend of polarizability across the periodic table. Can someone please help me out?
Larger atoms in the same group are more polarizable. For example Bromine is more polarizable than Fluorine, so Br- is a stronger nucleophile than F-. I'm pretty sure the trend isn't as definite as for some other things, but definitely the elements towards the bottom right of the period table are the most polarizable.
I think it'd be helpful to review the first couple of chapters from Chem14A to get a refresher on the polarizability of atom! Typically, atoms will larger atomic radii (those towards the bottom of the periodic table) have more loosely bonded electrons and therefore have electrons more readily available to be involved in a reaction.
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