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Electronegativity: Predicting Bond Formation
The differences in Pauling electronegativity values can be used to predict whether a bond
is covalent or ionic in character
Electronegativity & covalent bonds
Single covalent bonds are formed by sharing a pair of electrons between two atoms
In diatomic molecules the electron density is shared equally between the two atoms
o Eg. H
2
, O
2
and Cl
2
Both atoms will have the same electronegativity value and have an equal attraction for the
bonding pair of electrons leading to formation of a covalent bond
The equal distribution leads to a non-polar molecule
The electronegativity values are equal resulting in the formation of a nonpolar covalent bond
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