What is the molecular shape of a molecule that has three electron pairs in which two pairs are shared and one is an unshared pair?

1 Answer
Sep 28, 2016

Answer:

The electron pairs are trigonal planar to a first approximation.

Explanation:

The electron pairs mutually repel each other; and their most stable geometry is as a trigonal plane, with #120""^@# between the pairs. But we describe molecular geometry on the basis of the disposition, the geometry, of atoms, not electron pairs.

An #AX_2E# molecule would thus be described as bent, with #/_X-A-X# #<# #120^@#. The angle is compressed somewhat in that the lone pair is closer to the central molecule, and repels the bonding pairs of electron. Species of this type include ozone, #O_3#, dichlorocarbene, #"CCl"_2#, and nitrite anion, #NO_2^-#. You should look up the actual bond angles observed for these species.