HomeTable ofContents Gateway page Lewis structures Molecular structure Electronegativity molecule Polarity

Lewis Structures

Lewis electron dot frameworks are depictions of the distribution of electron in molecules and ions. Lock are useful in determining the three-dimensional form of a molecule or ion. A Lewis structure can be attracted for a molecule or ion by following three steps:

Step 1: count the total variety of valence electrons.

You are watching: Which atom is the central atom

For a neutral molecule, amount the numbers of valence electrons of each atom in the molecule. Because that a an unfavorable ion, add to the sum the size of the charge. For a optimistic ion, subtract from the sum the size of the charge.

What is the total number of valence electrons for each that the following molecules or ions?


Click here to see periodic Table

Molecule or IonTotal # ofValence Electrons

Good! You can review the calculate below:

Remember the valence electrons for each atom is the same as the A group number in the regular table. Also remember that a negative charge will include to the valence electron count. Shot again!

The exactly answers have actually been entered for you. Make sure and review the calculation below!

Moleculeor IonAtomsValence ElectronsTotalValence Electrons
3 H3 x 1
4 F4 x 7
3 O3 x 6
-1 charge1

Step 2: decision on the plan of atoms.

The main atom is commonly the atom v the lowest subscript in the molecule formula and the atom the can form the many bonds. If all of the atom usually type the same number of bonds, the least electronegative atom is usually the main atom.

click on the atom in every of the molecules or ions below that will certainly be the main atom.

P H 3C F 4N O 3-

Hydrogen have the right to only do one bond! try again.

Fluorine can only make one bond! shot again.

Which atom in the formula has the smallest subscript? shot again!


Step 3: kinds electrons approximately the atom so the each atom has an octet.


Hydrogen will only have two electrons.Group 3A (boron, aluminum, etc.) may only have actually six electrons.Atoms in the 3rd row and also beyond may broaden their octet (have an ext than eight electrons) if needed.

Clicking on an atom in the structures listed below will include a lone pair of electrons. Clicking on a shortcut will add a pair of electron to the shortcut (making a solitary bond a double bond). Kinds electrons around the atom in each framework so each atom has an octet. The number of valence electrons because that each molecule or ion is shown beneath the structure.

8 valence e- "s
32 valence e- "s
24 valence e- "s

Remember hydrogen will certainly not have more than two electrons. This hydrogen is part of a covalent shortcut (sharing two electrons).

A dual bond here would cause hydrogen come share four electrons through phosphorus. Remember the hydrogen will not have an ext than two electrons.

You far better count the electrons currently included in your Lewis structure! psychic this structure should only have actually eight electrons.

Good! This Lewis structure has actually eight electron - one lone pair ~ above phosphorus (2) and three bonds (6). The phosphorus has eight electrons, and each hydrogen has actually two electrons.

This structure must only have actually eight electrons! The 3 bonds phosphorus makes to the hydrogen atom account for six electrons. Where must you ar the continuing to be two electrons?

This fluorine currently has eight electrons (an octet) - three lone electron bag (6 electrons) and one shortcut (2 electrons).

Carbon is making 4 bonds (8 electrons) - it already has one octet!

Putting an additional bond right here would definately reason carbon come have much more than eight electrons. You better try other else.

Each atom in this Lewis framework should have actually an octet of electron (8 electrons). Remember the each lone electron pair counts as two electrons and each bond counts as two electrons (for every of the atom participating in the bond).

Good! each atom in this Lewis structure has actually an octet and also the structure has a complete of 32 electrons.

Putting another lone electron pair top top this oxygen will cause it to have better than eight electrons.

This nitrogen already as eight electrons (one lone pair and three bonds).

Putting one more bond below would cause nitrogen to have an ext than eight electrons. Girlfriend should shot something else.

Good! This Lewis structure has a complete of 24 electrons and also each atom has an octet. A complete Lewis framework for an ion is bracketed and also includes the charge.

See more: 2004 Mercury Grand Marquis Thermostat Housing, 2004 Mercury Grand Marquis Thermostat

While each atom in this structure has an octet, you have used too numerous electrons! This ion only has 24 electrons.