Atoms having equal or nearly equal electronegativities are expected to form what types of bonds?

1 Answer
Jul 8, 2016

These are expected to form covalent bonds.


By definition, electronegativity is conceived to be the ability of an atom in a chemical bond to polarize electron density towards itself. The elements on the RHS of the Periodic Table as we face it, i.e. #O# and #F# are the most electronegative.

Nevertheless, electronegative atoms that bind together tend to share electron density equally. This is the very definition of a covalent bond: #"sharing of electrons between atoms"#.

Consider the oxygen molecule #O=O#, and the fluorine molecule, #F-F#. Both of the elements are strongly electronegative, and yet both of the homonuclear molecules display covalent bonds, with equal electronic distribution.