So you have seen the above image by now, right?
Let me explain the above image in short.
ClO- (hypochlorite ion) lewis structure has one Chlorine atom (Cl) and one Oxygen atom (O) which contain a single bond between them. There are 3 lone pairs on both the Chlorine atom (Cl) as well as Oxygen atom (O). There is a -1 formal charge on the Oxygen atom (O).
If you haven’t understood anything from the above image of ClO- (hypochlorite ion) lewis structure, then just stick with me and you will get the detailed step by step explanation on drawing a lewis structure of ClO- ion.
So let’s move to the steps of drawing the lewis structure of ClO- ion.
Steps of drawing ClO- lewis structure
Step 1: Find the total valence electrons in ClO- ion
In order to find the total valence electrons in a ClO- (hypochlorite ion), first of all you should know the valence electrons present in a single chlorine atom as well as oxygen atom.
(Valence electrons are the electrons that are present in the outermost orbit of any atom.)
Here, I’ll tell you how you can easily find the valence electrons of chlorine as well as oxygen using a periodic table.
Total valence electrons in ClO- ion
→ Valence electrons given by chlorine atom:
You can see the 7 valence electrons present in the chlorine atom as shown in the above image.
→ Valence electrons given by oxygen atom:
You can see the 6 valence electrons present in the oxygen atom as shown in the above image.
Total valence electrons in ClO- ion = valence electrons given by 1 chlorine atom + valence electrons given by 1 oxygen atom + 1 more electron is added due to 1 negative charge = 7 + 6 + 1 = 14.
Step 2: Select the central atom
For selecting the center atom, you have to remember that the atom which is less electronegative remains at the center.
Now here the given ion is ClO- ion. It has only two atoms, so you can select any of the atoms as a center atom.
Let’s assume the chlorine atom as a central atom.
(You should assume the less electronegative atom as a center atom).
Step 3: Connect each atoms by putting an electron pair between them
Now in the ClO molecule, you have to put the electron pairs between the chlorine atom (Cl) and oxygen atom (O).
This indicates that the chlorine (Cl) atom and oxygen (O) atom are chemically bonded with each other in a ClO molecule.
Step 4: Make the outer atoms stable. Place the remaining valence electrons pair on the central atom.
Now in this step, you have to check the stability of the outer atom.
Here in the sketch of ClO molecule, we have assumed the chlorine atom as a center atom. So the oxygen is the outer atom.
Hence you have to make the oxygen atom stable.
You can see in the below image that the oxygen atom is forming an octet and hence it is stable.
Also, in step 1 we have calculated the total number of valence electrons present in the ClO- ion.
The ClO- ion has a total 14 valence electrons and out of these, only 8 valence electrons are used in the above sketch.
So the number of electrons which are left = 14 – 8 = 6.
You have to put these 6 electrons on the chlorine atom in the above sketch of ClO molecule.
Now let’s proceed to the next step.
Step 5: Check the octet on the central atom
In this step, you have to check whether the central chlorine atom (Cl) is stable or not.
In order to check the stability of the central chlorine (Cl) atom, we have to check whether it is forming an octet or not.
You can see from the above picture that the chlorine atom is forming an octet. That means it has 8 electrons.
And hence the chlorine atom is stable.
Now let’s proceed to the final step to check whether the lewis structure of ClO- ion is stable or not.
Step 6: Check the stability of lewis structure
Now you have come to the final step in which you have to check the stability of lewis structure of ClO.
The stability of lewis structure can be checked by using a concept of formal charge.
In short, now you have to find the formal charge on the chlorine atom (Cl) as well as oxygen atom (O) present in the ClO molecule.
For calculating the formal charge, you have to use the following formula;
Formal charge = Valence electrons – (Bonding electrons)/2 – Nonbonding electrons
For Chlorine (Cl) atom:
Valence electrons = 7 (because chlorine is in group 17)
Bonding electrons = 2
Nonbonding electrons = 6
For Oxygen (O) atom:
Valence electrons = 6 (because oxygen is in group 16)
Bonding electrons = 2
Nonbonding electrons = 6
From the above calculations of formal charge, you can see that the chlorine (Cl) atom has 0 charge and the oxygen (O) atom has -1 charge.
So let’s keep these charges on the respective atoms in the ClO molecule.
This overall -1 charge on the ClO molecule is represented in the image given below.
In the above lewis dot structure of ClO- ion, you can also represent each bonding electron pair (:) as a single bond (|). By doing so, you will get the following lewis structure of ClO- ion.
I hope you have completely understood all the above steps.
For more practice and better understanding, you can try other lewis structures listed below.
Try (or at least See) these lewis structures for better understanding:
|SeO2 lewis structure
|OCl2 lewis structure
|CH3COOH (acetic acid) lewis structure
|SiCl4 lewis structure
|BrO3- lewis structure
|CBr4 lewis structure
Jay is an educator and has helped more than 100,000 students in their studies by providing simple and easy explanations on different science-related topics. He is a founder of Pediabay and is passionate about helping students through his easily digestible explanations.
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