VSEPR and Molecular Structures

By Vivi Uppaluru

How to determine?

How can you tell what molecular structure of the atom will be? Take a look at the chart below. The molecular structure of a molecule is determined by the number of bonds. If you were asking to find the electron structure, then that is determined by the number of domains. Domains are the number of "things" around the central atom. For example, the molecule H2O has Oxygen as a central atom and two Hydrogens...
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The water molecule has 4 domains. Two which are bonds and the other two which are two lone pairs. This classifies the electron structure as tetrahedral. To find the molecular structure, you count only the bonds. H2O has only 2 bonds. Therefore, H2O is classified as a bent molecule.

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