So you have seen the above image by now, right?
Let me explain the above image in short.
N2F2 lewis structure has a double bond between the two Nitrogen atoms (N) and a single bond between the Nitrogen atom (N) and Fluorine atoms (F). There are 2 lone pairs on Nitrogen atoms (N) and 3 lone pairs on Fluorine atoms (F).
If you haven’t understood anything from the above image of N2F2 lewis structure, then just stick with me and you will get the detailed step by step explanation on drawing a lewis structure of N2F2.
So let’s move to the steps of drawing the lewis structure of N2F2.
Steps of drawing N2F2 lewis structure
Step 1: Find the total valence electrons in N2F2 molecule
In order to find the total valence electrons in a N2F2 molecule, first of all you should know the valence electrons present in nitrogen atom as well as fluorine 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 nitrogen as well as fluorine using a periodic table.
Total valence electrons in N2F2 molecule
→ Valence electrons given by nitrogen atom:
Nitrogen is a group 15 element on the periodic table.  Hence the valence electrons present in nitrogen is 5.
You can see the 5 valence electrons present in the nitrogen atom as shown in the above image.
→ Valence electrons given by fluorine atom:
Fluorine is group 17 element on the periodic table.  Hence the valence electron present in fluorine is 7.
You can see the 7 valence electrons present in the fluorine atom as shown in the above image.
Total valence electrons in N2F2 molecule = valence electrons given by 2 nitrogen atom + valence electrons given by 2 fluorine atoms = 5(2) + 7(2) = 24.
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 molecule is N2F2 and it contains nitrogen atoms (N) and fluorine atoms (F).
You can see the electronegativity values of nitrogen atom (N) and fluorine atom (F) in the above periodic table.
If we compare the electronegativity values of nitrogen (N) and fluorine (F) then the nitrogen atom is less electronegative.
So here, the nitrogen atoms (N) are the center atom and the fluorine atoms (F) are the outside atoms.
Step 3: Connect each atoms by putting an electron pair between them
Now in the N2F2 molecule, you have to put the electron pairs between the nitrogen-nitrogen atoms and between the nitrogen-fluorine atoms.
This indicates that these atoms are chemically bonded with each other in a N2F2 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 atoms.
Here in the sketch of N2F2 molecule, you can see that the outer atoms are fluorine atoms.
These outer fluorine atoms are forming an octet and hence they are stable.
Also, in step 1 we have calculated the total number of valence electrons present in the N2F2 molecule.
The N2F2 molecule has a total 24 valence electrons and out of these, only 18 valence electrons are used in the above sketch.
So the number of electrons which are left = 24 – 18 = 6.
You have to put these 6 electrons on both the central nitrogen atoms in the above sketch of N2F2 molecule.
Now let’s proceed to the next step.
Step 5: Check the octet on the central atom. If it does not have octet, then convert the lone pair into a double bond or triple bond.
In this step, you have to check whether the central nitrogen atoms (N) are stable or not.
In order to check the stability of the central nitrogen (N) atoms, we have to check whether they are forming an octet or not.
Unfortunately, one of the nitrogen atoms is not forming an octet here.
Now to make this nitrogen atom stable, you have to convert the lone pair into a double bond so that the nitrogen atom can have 8 electrons (i.e octet).
After converting this electron pair into a double bond, the central nitrogen atom will get 2 more electrons and thus its total electrons will become 8.
You can see from the above picture that both the nitrogen atoms are forming an octet.
And hence these nitrogen atoms are stable.
Now let’s proceed to the final step to check whether the lewis structure of N2F2 is stable or not.
(Note: Here we have shifted the electron pair from the nitrogen atom and not from the fluorine atom.
Because, remember that you have to shift the electron pair from the atom which is less electronegative.
This is because the less electronegative atom has more tendency to donate the electron.
Here if we compare the nitrogen atom and fluorine atom, then the nitrogen atom is less electronegative.
So you have to shift the electron pair from the nitrogen atom.)
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 N2F2.
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 nitrogen (N) atoms as well as fluorine (F) atoms present in the N2F2 molecule.
For calculating the formal charge, you have to use the following formula;
Formal charge = Valence electrons – (Bonding electrons)/2 – Nonbonding electrons
For Nitrogen (N) atom:
Valence electrons = 5 (because nitrogen is in group 15)
Bonding electrons = 6
Nonbonding electrons = 2
For Fluorine (F) atom:
Valence electrons = 7 (because fluorine is in group 17)
Bonding electrons = 2
Nonbonding electrons = 6
From the above calculations of formal charge, you can see that the nitrogen (N) atoms as well as fluorine (F) atoms have a “zero” formal charge.
This indicates that the above lewis structure of N2F2 is stable and there is no further change in the above structure of N2F2.
In the above lewis dot structure of N2F2, you can also represent each bonding electron pair (:) as a single bond (|). By doing so, you will get the following lewis structure of N2F2.
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:
|CH2 Lewis Structure
|HO2- Lewis Structure
|C2HCl Lewis Structure
|S2O Lewis Structure
|BrCl3 Lewis Structure
|NO2Cl 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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