Allison McCulloch
CEM 111.01
Microtheme 9
Moving from Bond Polarity to Using Vectors to Determine the Polarity of Molecules
Determining if a bond is polar or not is simple. If the vectors cancel, the bond will be polar. In a polar bond, there will be a positive and negative vector, like in HCl. H has a positive vector and Cl has a negative. The positive and negative cancel, relating that the bond is in fact polar. If the bond is nonpolar, the dipole moment will be zero.
Sometimes a polar bond will end up being a nonpolar molecule, however, like CO2. Carbon’s vector is positive and oxygen’s vector is negative. The dipoles point in opposite directions and so are canceled, causing the CO2 polar bond to be a nonpolar molecule.