When there space no polar bonds in a molecule, over there is no irreversible charge difference between one part of the molecule and also another, and also the molecule is nonpolar. For example, the Cl2 molecule has actually no polar bonds since the electron fee is the same on both atoms. The is therefore a nonpolar molecule. None of the bonds in hydrocarbon molecules, such as hexane, C6H14, are significantly polar, for this reason hydrocarbons are nonpolar molecular substances.

You are watching: Which molecule is nonpolar and has a symmetrical shape

A molecule deserve to possess polarbonds and also still be nonpolar. If the polar bonds are evenly (or symmetrically)distributed, the shortcut dipoles cancel and do not produce a molecular dipole. Forexample, the 3 bonds in a molecule of BF3 are substantially polar, however theyare symmetrically arranged approximately the main boron atom. No next of themolecule has much more negative or hopeful charge than one more side, and so themolecule is nonpolar:


A water molecule is polarbecause (1) that O-H bonds are substantially polar, and (2) its bent geometrymakes the circulation of those polar binding asymmetrical. The side of the watermolecule containing the more electronegative oxygen atom is partially negative,and the side of the molecule comprise the much less electronegative hydrogen atomsis partly positive.


SampleStudy Sheet: Predicting molecular Polarity

Tip-off – You room asked to predict whether a molecule is polar or nonpolar; or you space asked a questionthat cannot be answered uneven you recognize whether a molecule is polar or nonpolar.(For example, you room asked come predict the kind of attraction hold theparticles with each other in a offered liquid or solid.)

General Steps -

Step 1: draw a reasonable Lewis structure for the substance.

Step 2: recognize each bond as either polar or nonpolar. (Ifthe distinction in electronegativity for the atoms in a shortcut is higher than 0.4,we consider the shortcut polar. If the distinction in electronegativity is less than0.4, the link is basically nonpolar.)

If there space no polar bonds, the molecule is nonpolar.

If the molecule has actually polar bonds, relocate on to action 3.

Step 3: If over there is just one main atom, study theelectron groups about it.

If there space no lone pairs on the central atom, and also if all thebonds to the central atom room the same, the molecule is nonpolar. (This shortcutis explained more totally in the instance that follows.)

If the main atom has at least one polar bond and if the groupsbonded come the central atom space not every identical, the molecule is probablypolar. Move on to action 4.

Step 4: attract a geometric sketch of the molecule.

Step 5: determine the symmetry of the molecule using thefollowing steps.

Describe the polar bonds through arrows pointing towards the moreelectronegative element. Usage the size of the arrow to present the relativepolarities of the different bonds. (A greater distinction in electronegativitysuggests a much more polar bond, i m sorry is described with a longer arrow.)

Decide whether the plan of arrows is symmetry orasymmetrical

If the setup is symmetrical and also the arrows are of equallength, the molecule is nonpolar.

If the arrows space of various lengths, and also if they do not balanceeach other, the molecule is polar.

If the plan is asymmetrical, the molecule is polar.

EXAMPLE – Predicting molecule Polarity:

Decidewhether the molecules represented by the following formulas space polar ornonpolar. (You might need to attract Lewis structures and also geometric sketches come doso.)

a. CO2 b. OF2c. CCl4 d. CH2Cl2e. HCN


a. The Lewis structure for CO2 is


The electronegativities that carbon and also oxygenare 2.55 and 3.44. The 0.89 difference in electronegativity indicates that theC-O bonds are polar, yet the symmetrical setup of this bonds makesthe molecule nonpolar.

If we placed arrows right into the geometric map out for CO2, we check out that they exactly balance every other, in both direction andmagnitude. This shows the the contrary of the bonds.


b. The Lewis structure for OF2 is


The electronegativities the oxygen and fluorine,3.44 and 3.98, respectively, create a 0.54 distinction that leads us to predictthat the O-F bonds are polar. The molecule geometry the OF2 is bent. Suchan asymmetrical distribution of polar bonds would create a polar molecule.


c. The molecule geometry the CCl4 istetrahedral. Even though the C-Cl bonds space polar, their symmetrical arrangementmakes the molecule nonpolar.

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d. TheLewis framework for CH2Cl2 is


The electronegativities the hydrogen, carbon, andchlorine are 2.20, 2.55, and also 3.16. The 0.35 distinction in electronegativity forthe H-C bonds tells united state that castle are basically nonpolar. The 0.61difference in electronegativity for the C-Cl bonds mirrors that castle arepolar. The adhering to geometric sketches show that the polar bond areasymmetrically arranged, therefore the molecule is polar. (Notice that the Lewisstructure above incorrectly says that the bonds room symmetrically arranged.Keep in mind the Lewis structures regularly give a false impression the the geometryof the molecules they represent.)


e. TheLewis structure and also geometric lay out for HCN room the same:


The electronegativities the hydrogen,carbon, and also nitrogen space 2.20, 2.55, and also 3.04. The 0.35 distinction inelectronegativity for the H-C bond mirrors that it is basically nonpolar. The0.49 distinction in electronegativity for the C-N link tells us that it is polar.Molecules with one polar shortcut are constantly polar.