Problem: Label the bonding and antibonding molecular orbitals that result from linear combinations of the 2px atomic orbitals in a homonuclear diatomic molecule. (The 2px orbitals are those whose lobes are oriented along the bonding axis.)

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We are asked to label the bonding and antibonding molecular orbitals that result from linear combinations of the 2px atomic orbitals in a homonuclear diatomic molecule.

The relative energy levels of atomic and molecular orbitals are typically shown in a molecular orbital diagram.

For a diatomic molecule, the atomic orbitals of one atom are shown on the left, and those of the other atom is shown on the right. 

Each horizontal line represents one orbital that can hold two electrons. 

The molecular orbitals formed by the combination of the atomic orbitals are shown in the center. Dashed lines show which of the atomic orbitals combine to form the molecular orbitals. 

For each pair of atomic orbitals that combine, one lower-energy (bonding) molecular orbital and one higher-energy (antibonding) orbital result.


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Label the bonding and antibonding molecular orbitals that result from linear combinations of the 2px atomic orbitals in a homonuclear diatomic molecule. (The 2px orbitals are those whose lobes are oriented along the bonding axis.)

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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 Molecular Orbital Theory concept. You can view video lessons to learn Molecular Orbital Theory . Or if you need more Molecular Orbital Theory practice, you can also practice Molecular Orbital Theory practice problems.