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Coefficients of wave function of a hybrid orbital

  1. Jun 11, 2015 #1
    Assuming the 2s and 2p wavefunctions are normalized, determine the coefficients in the hybrid orbital:

    Ψ(sp3) = aΨ(2s) + aΨ(2px) + aΨ(2py) + aΨ(2pz) (the other 3 hybrids have – signs for some of the coefficients.

    I have no clue where to start. I know this is a tetrahedral hybrid orbital but can't seem to grasp this question.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 11, 2015 #2

    fzero

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    Are the other 3 hybrids completely specified for you? If so, you should impose orthonormality to determine the coefficients for this wavefunction.
     
  4. Jun 11, 2015 #3
    No this is the whole problem. I keep thinking it must be entirely simple but I guess it's not. (My teacher has a way of omission to the point of ridiculous)
     
  5. Jun 12, 2015 #4

    fzero

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    Well, you've written down a fairly specific expression with the same coefficient ##a## in front of each term. Assuming that's given, then ##a## should be fixed by normalizing the wavefunction. You should verify that the 4 hybrid orbitals are orthonormal to complete the exercise.
     
  6. Jun 12, 2015 #5
    If I assume orthonormality and the other 3 hybrids have some coefficients as negative, then am I right to conclude that the coefficients for this one are all +1/2?
     
  7. Jun 12, 2015 #6

    fzero

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    Yes, normalizing this requires ##a=1/2##.
     
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