By Lanna Derry, Maria Connor, Carol Jordan
For using IB Chemistry general point
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Extra resources for Chemistry for Use with the International Baccalaureate : Standard Level
All chemical bonds are based on the electrostatic attraction between positive and negative particles. When two or more atoms approach one another to form a bond, it is their outer-shell electrons that generally interact. Outer-shell electrons are so important in the generation of chemical bonds that they are given a special name—valence electrons. The most stable arrangement of electrons, either within a single atom or when grouped in compounds, is to have an outer-shell of eight electrons (except in the case of hydrogen, where two electrons meets this criterion), such as is found in the gases of group 0 (VIII) of the periodic table.
H N H H The triple covalent bond between nitrogen atoms is very strong and helps us to understand why nitrogen is such an unreactive gas. It requires a great deal of energy (945 kJ mol–1, compared to just 242 kJ mol–1 for chlorine gas) to break the triple bond between the atoms and so allow nitrogen to form new bonds with other atoms. The amount of energy required to break a bond is known as the bond dissociation enthalpy, and is generally measured in kilojoules per mole of molecules dissociated.
THEORY OF KNOWLEDGE What symbolic function do Lewis structures perform? Lewis structures are not restricted to diatomic molecules of elements; they can be used to represent any molecule. We will examine such examples in the section on shapes of molecules. HOW TO DRAW A LEWIS STRUCTURE FOR A MOLECULE Determine how many valence electrons there are in each atom of the molecule. g. NH3 Determine how many more electrons are needed to fill the valence shell. This is the number of bonds the atom will form.