Shapes of Molecules

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  • The shape of a molecule can be predicted using the Valence Shell Electron Pair Repulsion Theory (Electron Repulsion Theory for short):
    • Shape is determined by no. of electron pairs in outer shell of central atom
    • Electron pairs repel each other
    • Lone pairs repel more than bond pairs
    • Electron pairs spread out as far as possible
    • Double bonds act as single bonds when assigning shape

2 Bond Electron Pairs

  • Both pairs repel equally
  • Shape:


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