Problem: Consider the lattice energy of any ionic compound. What combination of ions and charges will produce the largest (in magnitude) lattice energies?A) small ions and small chargesB) large ions and large chargesC) small ions and large chargesD) large ions and small chargesThe electrostatic attraction between oppositely charged ions is called an ionic bond. The net energy change in the formation of an ionic bond is a composite of five steps, some of which absorb energy and some of which release energy. The steps are summarized for a generic metal, M, and a diatomic halogen, X2 , as1. sublimation of the metal2. dissociation of the X−X bond,3. ionization of the metal,4. transfer of the electron to X, and5. crystalline solid formation.The overall energy transfer is the sum of the energy changes for each step. The magnitude of the potential energy of two interacting charges, EE, (which is related to Lattice energy) is the energy associated with the strength of the attraction between ions in the ionic compound and can be determined bywhere k is a constant equal to 1/(4πϵ0) = 1/(1.11 × 10 − 10 C2 /(J ⋅ m)), q1 and q2 are the charges of the ions, and dd is the distance between the nuclei of the ions.

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Problem Details

Consider the lattice energy of any ionic compound. What combination of ions and charges will produce the largest (in magnitude) lattice energies?

A) small ions and small charges
B) large ions and large charges
C) small ions and large charges
D) large ions and small charges


The electrostatic attraction between oppositely charged ions is called an ionic bond. The net energy change in the formation of an ionic bond is a composite of five steps, some of which absorb energy and some of which release energy. The steps are summarized for a generic metal, M, and a diatomic halogen, X2 , as


1. sublimation of the metal
2. dissociation of the X−X bond,
3. ionization of the metal,
4. transfer of the electron to X, and
5. crystalline solid formation.


The overall energy transfer is the sum of the energy changes for each step. The magnitude of the potential energy of two interacting charges, EE, (which is related to Lattice energy) is the energy associated with the strength of the attraction between ions in the ionic compound and can be determined by


where k is a constant equal to 1/(4πϵ0) = 1/(1.11 × 10 − 10 C2 /(J ⋅ m)), q1 and q2 are the charges of the ions, and dd is the distance between the nuclei of the ions.

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