What is the difference between london dispersion and van der waals forces?

1 Answer
Mar 13, 2016

Both are Weak Forces defined as given in the explanation below...


Van der Walls include any kind of inter- or intra-molecular force other than covalent and ionic bonds, including all interactions between:

  • charges and dipoles
  • dipoles and dipoles
  • monopoles and the above

whether those dipoles are permanent, induced, or transient.

Dispersion force, on the other hand (London forces), is the case where one or both of the dipoles (or multipoles) are transient, that may arise entirely from continual fluctuations in electron densities.