# Orbital Shapes Help

kirsten_2009

## Homework Statement

(1) Which of the following clusters of orbitals would form the shape shown here http://session.masteringchemistry.com/problemAsset/1076900/19/1076900b.jpg and would also be possible within the valence shell of an atom?
a.) one d orbital
b.) five d orbitals
c.) five sp^3 orbitals
d.) five sp^3d orbitals
e.) five sp^3d^2 orbitals
f.) two sp orbitals and three sp^2 orbitals
g.) three sp^2 orbitals and two p orbitals
h.) three sp^2 orbitals and one p orbital

(2) Which of the following clusters of orbitals would form the shape shown here http://session.masteringchemistry.com/problemAsset/1076900/19/1076900a.jpg and would also be possible within the valence shell of an atom?
a.) two sp orbitals and two p orbitals
b.) two sp orbitals and four p orbitals
c.) one sp orbital and two p orbitals
d.) six sp^3 orbitals
e.) three p orbitals
f.) six sp^3d^2 orbitals
g.) six sp^3d orbitals
h.) three sp orbitals

## The Attempt at a Solution

(1) I'm pretty certain than sp^3d is one of them, but I can't recognize any other and it says that there is more...help?

(2) Again, I'm almost positive that sp^3d^2 is one of them but I can't recognize any other. Thanks in advance!

## Answers and Replies

PhaseShifter
q) What does a p orbital look like?

kirsten_2009
I'm not sure at what your getting at...but thanks for the reply.

PhaseShifter
Compare the shape of a p orbital to a pair of sp hybrids, for instance...

If you just look at the electron probability density rather than the actual sign of the wavefunction, how similar are they?

kirsten_2009
They look pretty similar to me. However, I really don't grasp what your trying to say or how it helps me with answering my question. I'm super bad at this hybridization business and my assignment is due in a couple of hours. Could you perhaps just explain it to me?

PhaseShifter
A two-lobed orbital looks very similar to two one-lobed orbitals, correct?
So consider that a pair of diametrically opposed lobes could either be two hybrid orbitals or one p orbital (and if you have multiple pairs of opposing lobes, each pair could be a p orbital)...what hybrids could the remaining lobes represent?

kirsten_2009
Hi,

O.k so I see what you mean. So the answers for the second question would be
f.) six sp^3d^2 orbitals
e.) three p orbitals
a.) two sp orbitals and two p orbitals

Correct?

Thanks a lot! :) But what about the first question? There are more answers that could apply. I've selected:
d.) five sp^3d orbitals
a.) one d orbital
Are there any that I am missing for this question?

Again, thanks a bunch!

PhaseShifter
Hi,

O.k so I see what you mean. So the answers for the second question would be
f.) six sp^3d^2 orbitals
e.) three p orbitals
a.) two sp orbitals and two p orbitals

Correct?
So far, this is good.

Thanks a lot! :) But what about the first question? There are more answers that could apply. I've selected:
d.) five sp^3d orbitals
a.) one d orbital

Are there any that I am missing for this question?
I'm not seeing the d orbital at all here. Look at the symmetry--the top is a reflection of the bottom, and the vertical axis is also a threefold axis of symmetry.