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The possible electron pair and molecular geometries are:
Step 1: Hydrogen cannot function as the central atom. Carbon (EN = 2.55) is less electronegative than N (EN = 3.04): C is the central atom.
Step 2: We need to determine the total number of valence electrons present in the molecule:
Group Valence Electrons
H 1A 1 × 1 e– = 1 e–
C 4A 1 × 4 e– = 4 e–
N 5A 1 × 5 e– = 5 e–
Total: 10 valence e–
Step 3: The Lewis structure of HCN is:
What is the geometry of the HCN molecule?
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