Problem: The HCl(g) molecule has a bond length of 127 pm and a dipole moment of 1.08 D.Without doing detailed calculations, determine the best estimate for its percent ionic character.

FREE Expert Solution

In this problem, we are asked to determine the best estimate of the percent ionic character of the HCl(g) molecule.

Recall, that a dipole moment (µ) occurs any time there is a separation of positive and negative charge. 

It is expressed mathematically:

µ=qr

Where: µ  (in Debye)  is the dipole moment, q  (1.6 x 10-19 C) is the charges, and r (in m) is the bond length.


The percent ionic character is the ratio between the bond's actual dipole moment to the dipole moment it would have if electrons were completely transferred from one atom to another, multiplied by 100%.

Percent ionic character=µmeasuredµe- is completely transferred×100%


To solve this problem, let us assume that this molecule is completely ionic.

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Problem Details

The HCl(g) molecule has a bond length of 127 pm and a dipole moment of 1.08 D.

Without doing detailed calculations, determine the best estimate for its percent ionic character.

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What scientific concept do you need to know in order to solve this problem?

Our tutors have indicated that to solve this problem you will need to apply the Dipole Moment concept. You can view video lessons to learn Dipole Moment. Or if you need more Dipole Moment practice, you can also practice Dipole Moment practice problems.

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Based on our data, we think this problem is relevant for Professor Al-Qaisi's class at UMD.