Covalent Bonding

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Giant Covalent Structures


  • Each carbon atom forms four covalent bonds in a very rigid, giant covalent structure
  • Hardest natural substance, so it's used for drill tips
  • Pretty and sparkly too.


  • Each carbon atom only forms 3 covalent bonds
  • This creates layers which are free to slide over each other
  • Graphite is soft and slippery too
  • Weak intermolecular forces between the layers
  • Non - metal - good conductor of heat and electricity
  • Each carbon atom has one delocalised (free) electron and its these free electrons which conduct heat and electricity.

Silicon Dioxide (Silica):

  • Sand is made of Silica.
  • Each grain of sand is one giant structure of silicon and oxygen.
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