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Calculating electronegativity differences

  1. Sep 10, 2014 #1
    Hi, everyone!

    Just a quick question to be sure:

    I want to calculate the electronegativity difference of [itex]Na_{2}O,\ \Delta X_{Na_{2}O}[/itex],

    Is this correct:

    [itex]\Delta X_{Na_{2}O}=X_{O}-X_{Na}[/itex]

    Or is it:

    [itex]\Delta X_{Na_{2}O}=X_{O}-2*X_{Na}[/itex] (since there are 2 Na atoms).
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 10, 2014 #2


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    The first alternative without the factor 2 is correct. Usually, you use the electronegativity difference to estimate the polarity of a bond between two atoms. Other atoms bonded to these atoms are not relevant.
  4. Sep 10, 2014 #3
    Thank you very much for your quick reply, DrDu!
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2014
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