What's the deal with CO?

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xooll
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What's the deal with CO?

Postby xooll » Wed May 30, 2007 2:50 am UTC

From my high-school-chemistry-six-years-ago understanding of it, a carbon atom is capable of forming four covalent bonds. An oxygen atom can do two.
So carbon dioxide works fine, but how does carbon monoxide work?
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Postby Keith » Wed May 30, 2007 3:02 am UTC

They can both form 4 covalent bonds. IIRC, CO has a sigma bond, 2 pi bonds and a lone pair on each atom. Sharing of the electrons isn't dependent on where the electrons come from, that only makes it coordinate covalent or not.
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Postby Xial » Wed May 30, 2007 2:31 pm UTC

Also, although Carbon is capable of forming 4 covalent bonds, quadruple bonds do not exist.

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Postby skeptical scientist » Wed May 30, 2007 2:45 pm UTC

All I know is that atomic bonding isn't nearly as simple as you were taught in high school. They gloss over the pathological and nonstandard cases, which do exist.
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Postby gmalivuk » Wed May 30, 2007 3:03 pm UTC

skeptical scientist wrote:All I know is that atomic bonding isn't nearly as simple as you were taught in high school. They gloss over the pathological and nonstandard cases, which do exist.


Like xenon pentafluoride.

Anyway, Wikipedia is, as always, a good place to start.
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Postby Peripatetic » Fri Jun 01, 2007 10:12 am UTC


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Postby gmalivuk » Fri Jun 01, 2007 4:34 pm UTC

Right. I remember hearing about that but had forgotten what the chemical was.
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