Asked Feb 13, 2020

Calculate the formal charge on the indicated atom in each
of the following molecules or ions: (a) the central oxygen
atom in O3, (b) phosphorus in PF6-, (c) nitrogen in NO2,
(d) iodine in ICl3, (e) chlorine in HClO4 (hydrogen is bonded
to O).


Expert Answer

Step 1

The formal charge on the indicated atom in each
of the following molecules or ions is to be calculated.

(a) The central oxygen atom in O3,

(b) Phosphorus in PF6-,

(c) Nitrogen in NO2,
(d) Iodine in ICl3,

(e) Chlorine in HClO4 (hydrogen is bonded to O).

Step 2

Formal charge is the actual charge on individual atoms of a molecule or compound.

  • The sum of formal charges on each atom is always equal to the total charge of the molecule or ion.
  • The formula used to calculate formal charge is :Chemistry homework question answer, step 2, image 1
Step 3
  1. The central oxygen atom in O3:

The Lewis structure of O3 is:

Chemistry homework question answer, step 3, image 1

Now, the central atom Oxygen has 6 valence electrons.


Number of electrons in lone pairs around central O atom = 2

Number of bonds around central O atom = 3

Therefore, formal charge can be calculated as:

Chemistry homework question answer, step 3, image 2

Hence, the formal charge on the central oxygen atom in O3 is +1.


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