This Week's Puzzle

This assignment is due before 9 AM, Wednesday, December 13th, 2000.

  • This puzzle is worth 10 points of extra credit.
  • Answers must be accompanied by valid reasoning. Unlike the tests, the answer alone isn't enough!
  • Each week, the first student to submit a correct answer will recieve the stylish Chemistry Nomenclature Flash Cards
    (or a better prize when Dr. Blake can get his hands on some better prizes!).
  • Please enter your solution in the text area at the bottom of this page. DON'T FORGET TO GIVE YOUR NAME!


Due 9:00 AM Wednesday December 13, 2000

When we studied molecular orbital theory, we considered the interaction of s atomic orbitals with s atomic orbitals and the interaction of p atomic orbitals with p atomic orbitals. Because of this, there were only three types of molecular orbitals, sigma molecular orbitals from the s atomic orbitals, sigma molecular orbitals from the p atomic orbitals and pi molecular orbitals from the p atomic orbitals. In a more elaborate version of molecular orbital theory, there are additional molecular orbitals that result from addtional interactions of atomic orbitals.

1. If you have two transition elements bonding to make a diatomic molecule and you considered all possible orbital interactions, how many different sigma molecular orbitals might you have? Describe these orbitals in terms of which atomic orbitals are interacting to form them.

Make sure in your analysis that the Z axis is the internuclear axis and the particular orbitals that are interacting are specified. Example: One of the sigma molecular orbitals results from the interaction of a pz atomic orbital with a pz atomic orbital.

2. How many pi orbitals are there? Again, specify how they form.

3. What is the technical definition of a sigma orbital?

  • A pi orbital?
  • A delta orbital?

    4. Which orbitals would interact to form a delta orbital? Be very specific.

    Don't forget to explain your answer as clearly as possible.

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