Which of the following molecules or ions are likely to be free radicals: N2O, OCl-, and ClO2?

3 Answers

  • A free radical has one or more unpaired electrons. Most free radicals have an odd-number of electrons.

    N2O = 2(5)+6 = 16 electrons (not a free radical)

    OCl- = 6+7+1 = 14 electrons (not a free radical)

    ClO2 = 7+2(6) = 19 electrons (this is a free radical)

    O-Cl-O has one lone pairs on Cl, plus one additional electron on Cl. This is why ClO2 is stabilized by one more electron to make the chlorite ion, ClO2^-, which has 20 electrons and two lone pairs on Cl.

    ========= Follow up ===========

    Only the valence electrons are counted when writing the Lewis structure. Nitrogen has 5 (not 7) and oxygen has 6 (not 8), which chlorine has 7 valence electrons.

  • N2O: 2*7 + 8 = 22 electrons

    OCl-: 8 + 17 + 1 = 26 electrons

    ClO2: 17 + 2*8 = 33 electrons

    33 is odd number, so ClO2 is a free radical because it has one unpaired electron.

  • Free Radical Molecules

    Source(s): https://shorte.im/a843e

Leave a Comment