Difference Between Electron Geometry and Molecular Geometry

Main difference

The main difference between electron geometry and molecular geometry is that electron geometry includes the bonds and electron pairs in the molecule whereas molecular geometry includes only the number of bonds that are present in a molecule…

Electron Geometry vs. Molecular Geometry

The electronic geometry is formed by both the pairs of electrons and the bonds present in a molecule; on the other hand, molecular geometry is made up of only bonds that are present in a molecule. The electronic geometry contains pairs of electrons; on the other hand, molecular geometry does not contain electron pairs. In electronic geometry, lone pairs are also counted; on the opposite side, in molecular geometry, lone pairs are not counted.

In electronic geometry, the total number of pairs of electrons is considered; On the other side of the coin, in molecular geometry, the total number of electron pairs involved in the bond is considered. Electron geometry gives us information about the organization of electron groups; on the other hand, molecular geometry gives us information about the organization of only atoms in the molecule, except the lone pairs.

The electronic geometry can be determined with the help of VESPR theory; On the other hand, molecular geometry is defined by the arrangement of atoms around the nuclei of the central atom. Electron geometry includes both bonding and nonbonding pairs of electrons; On the other side of the coin, molecular geometry includes only the bonding pairs of electrons.

Comparison chart

electron geometry molecular geometry
Electron geometry is the geometry that determines the shape of the molecule, including the electron pairs and bonds in the molecule. Molecular geometry is the geometry that determines the shape of the molecule by including only the bonds in the molecule.
electron pairs
Electron geometry includes electron pairs Molecular geometry does not include electron pairs
Electron pair bonding
Electron geometry includes bonding electron pairs and nonbonding electron pairs. Molecular geometry includes only paired bonding electrons
Helpful
Electron geometry is useful in giving the arrangement of electron groups. Molecular geometry is useful in giving the arrangement of atoms in a molecule.
Determination
The electronic geometry can also be determined by the VESPR theory Molecular geometry can also be determined by the arrangement of atoms around the nuclei of the central atom.

What is electronic geometry?

Electron geometry is the type of geometry that is useful in giving the shape of the molecule that includes electron pairs and bond pairs that are present in a molecule. It can also be determined with the help of VSEPR theory. The main purpose of electron geometry is to discover the geometry of the molecule by the arrangement of atoms and electrons around the central atom. Electron pairs are considered only in electron geometry and are neglected in molecular geometry.

It gives us the arrangement of electron groups around the central atom. The geometry of the electrons can also be determined by decreasing the repulsions between the lone pair of electrons. In electron geometry, also consider the region of electrons that have different densities. Nonbonding electrons are also known as the lone pair of electrons. That is why the geometry of the electrons depends on the number of these electron regions. By decreasing the repulsion between these electronic regions, electronic geometry gives us the shape of molecules.

An example of electronic geometry can be given using the formula for methane. The central atom is carbon, and the number of valence electrons is 4. The hydrogen atom indicates the four valence electrons to complete the valence shell of carbon and hydrogen atoms through the exchange process. There are four single bonds in the structure of the molecule. Therefore, it is summarized that the geometry of methane is tetrahedral.

What is molecular geometry?

Molecular geometry is the type of geometry that is useful in giving the shape of the molecule that includes only the pair of electron bonds that are present in a molecule. It is measured by the arrangement of atoms around the nuclei of the central atom. Its main objective is to know the geometry of the molecule through the arrangement of atoms in a molecule. In molecular geometry, electron pairs are not primarily considered. It gives us the position of the atoms in the structure of the molecule.

The repulsion between the bonded atoms was also considered minor to find out the main purpose of the geometry. The main difference between electron geometry and molecular geometry is that when we discuss the shape of the molecule, it means that we are determining the molecular geometry; on the other hand, when we talk about the geometry of the electron pairs, it means that we are determining the geometry of the electrons.

Since molecular geometry is used to determine the shape of the molecule, we must use the Lewis structure when we are discussing the shape of molecules in molecular geometry by drawing it in the form of a Lewis method for determining the number of bonded electrons. The example of molecular geometry is the water molecule. It contains two bonding electrons and two nonbonding electrons. The central atom is the oxygen molecule which has two lone pairs. It receives two bonding electrons from the hydrogen atom by the sharing method. So the molecular geometry of the water molecule is bent.

Key differences

  1. Electron geometry determines the shape of the molecule involving the pair of electrons and the pair of bonds; on the other hand, molecular geometry determines the shape of the molecule which involves only the bond pairs.
  2. Electron geometry considers the pair of electrons; on the other hand, molecular geometry does not consider the pair of electrons.
  3. The geometry of the electrons helps to give the arrangement of the electron pairs; on the opposite side, the molecular geometry helps to give the arrangement of the atoms around the central nuclei.
  4. Electronic geometry includes both bonding and nonbonding electrons; On the other side of the coin, the molecular geometry includes only bonding electrons.
  5. Electron geometry can also be determined by VESPR theory; on the other hand, molecular geometry can also be determined by the arrangement of atoms around the nuclei of the central atom.
  6. In electronic geometry, the total number of electron pairs and bond pairs is counted; on the other hand, in molecular geometry, the total number of bond pairs is counted.

Final Thought

The above discussion concludes that both electron geometry and molecular geometry is the geometry that is used to determine the shape of the molecule. The geometry of the electrons gives us the shape of the molecule that includes both bonding and nonbonding pairs of electrons; on the other hand, molecular geometry gives us the shape of the molecule that includes only the bonding electron pairs.

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