Resonance is a psychological exercise within the Valence Bond concept of bonding that describes the delocalization of electrons within molecules. The involves constructing multiple Lewis frameworks that, when combined, represent the full digital structure that the molecule. Resonance structures are offered when a single Lewis framework cannot totally describe the bonding; the combination of feasible resonance structures is identified as a resonance hybrid, which to represent the in its entirety delocalization the electrons within the molecule. In general, molecules through multiple resonance frameworks will be an ext stable than one through fewer and some resonance structures contribute more to the security of the molecule than others - officially charges help in identify this.

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Resonance is a means of describing delocalized electron within particular molecules or polyatomic ions where the bonding cannot be to express by a solitary Lewis formula. A molecule or ion through such delocalized electron is stood for by several resonance structures. The atom skeleton that the Lewis structure of these resonance structures continues to be the same, only the electron areas differ. Together is the instance for ozone ((ceO3)), an allotrop of oxygen through a V-shaped structure and also an O–O–O edge of 117.5°. Let"s motivate the conversation by structure the Lewis structure for ozone.

1. We recognize that ozone has a V-shaped structure, so one O atom is central:


2. Resonance: All elements want one octet, and we can do that in multiple means by relocating the terminal atom"s electrons about (bonds too).


3. Assign Formal charges via Equation efFC.

Formal fee = (number that valence electrons in cost-free orbital) - (number the lone-pair electrons) - ( ( frac12 ) number link pair electrons)

Remember to identify the number of valence electron each atom has prior to assigning formal Charges

C = 4 valence e-, N = 5 valence e-, S = 6 valence e-, also add an extra electron because that the (-1) charge. The full of valence electrons is 16.


Example (PageIndex4): Benzene

Benzene is a usual organic solvent that was previously used in gasoline; the is no much longer used for this purpose, however, because it is now well-known to be a carcinogen. The benzene molecule ((ceC6H6)) consists of a continuous hexagon the carbon atoms, every of i m sorry is also bonded come a hydrogen atom. Use resonance frameworks to define the bonding in benzene.

Given: molecular formula and molecular geometry

Asked for: resonance structures


draw a structure for benzene portraying the external inspection atoms. Then calculation the variety of valence electrons offered in this drawing. Subtract this number indigenous the total number of valence electrons in benzene and also then find the continuing to be electrons such the each atom in the structure reaches one octet. Draw the resonance frameworks for benzene.


A each hydrogen atom contributes 1 valence electron, and each carbon atom contributes 4 valence electrons, because that a full of (6 × 1) + (6 × 4) = 30 valence electrons. If we place a single bonding electron pair in between each pair that carbon atoms and between every carbon and also a hydrogen atom, we attain the following:

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Example (PageIndex5): Nitrate Ion

Draw the possible resonance structures for the Nitrate ion (ceNO_3^-).

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1. Count up the valence electrons: (1*5) + (3*6) + 1(ion) = 24 electrons

2. Attract the shortcut connectivities:


3. Listed below is the resonance for CH3COO-, officially charges are displayed in red. The Lewis structure with the many formal charges is no desirable, since we want the Lewis structure with the least formal charge.