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Q. 7

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Physics for Scientists and Engineers: A Strategic Approach with Modern Physics
Found in: Page 1174

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Short Answer

FIGURE Q shows two possible wave functions for an electron in a linear triatomic molecule. Which of these is a bonding orbital and which is an antibonding orbital? Explain how you can distinguish them.

Wave function a is an antibonding orbital and wave function b is a bonding orbital.

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Step by Step Solution

Step 1: Given Information

We need to find a bonding orbital and an antibonding orbital in given wave function.

Step 2: Explanation

Wave function a is an anti-bonding orbital and wave function b is a bonding orbital. One can tell because in the bottom one the electron has a high probability of being found between adjacent protons, indicating that the adjacent protons are sharing the electron.

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