Hello friends, you could have countless doubts regarding the polarity in some molecules in the chemistry world. Many of us have a doubt concerning the polarity of SO2 (sulfur dioxide). So, I will certainly share my details with you to clean the doubt about the polarity the SO2.

You are watching: Is so2 polar or nonpolar molecule

Is SO2 polar or nonpolar? SO2 is polar in nature since of the difference in electronegativity between sulfur and oxygen atoms. The higher the distinction in electronegativity more will it is in the polarity the the molecule. The bent shape of SO2 is since of the repulsion between the unbonded electrons existing on the sulfur and also oxygen atoms. The unsymmetrical shape additionally identifies even if it is a molecule is polar or not.

Why is SO2 Polar?

In the SO2 molecule, the Sulfur has actually 6 electron in its vacant shell and also Oxygen also has 6 electrons in the vacant shell. 4 electrons of sulfur bond v the 2 pairs of electrons from both oxygen atoms around sulfur.

And ~ bonding in the SO2 molecule, the unlike charge stays on Sulfur and also Oxygen. 2 unbonded electrons stay on Sulfur and also 4 electron on both of the Oxygen atoms.

Therefore, unequal charge circulation occurs ~ the bonding the the SO2 molecule. The lone pair current on Sulfur and also lone current on Oxygen atoms reason repulsion between each other.

Oxygen is much more electronegative than Sulfur, as a result, the Oxygen-Sulfur bond share unequal fee distribution, and also the bond created in that is polar.

According to the VSEPR theory, the repulsion in between two lone bag is greater than the repulsion in between the lone pair and bond pair.

Similarly, in the SO2 case, the lone pair present on Sulfur and also Oxygen atom produces repulsion in between them.

In such situations as SO2, where more than one lone pair team is present, the geometrical shape of the molecule is slightly various as contrasted to the molecule where all groups are bonds.

Factors influence the polarity of a chemistry compound

The polarity that a molecule is decided based upon the uneven charge distribution of the atoms connected in the molecule. The uneven charge distribution results in the network dipole moment.

The molecule which has actually a non-zero value of network dipole moment is polar vice versa, the molecule which has actually net dipole moment equates to zero is non-polar. The CO2, O2 is an example of non-polar molecules.

You can read out the write-up for the reason of the non-polarity of CO2.

The molecules that have actually zero net dipole minute is as result of equal charge distribution on the atoms in the molecule. Therefore, the dipole minute gets canceled out and results in a net-zero dipole moment.

Dipole moment = Bond size * charge on each element

The calculation dipole minute of SO2 (sulfur dioxide) is 1.6 debyes.

It is better to know that the distinction in electronegativity is just one of the main factors that affect polarity.

The polarity the a molecule is straight proportional to the difference between the electronegativities of the atoms connected in the molecule.

The polarity and non-polarity of a molecule depends on the various factors such as

Molecular geometry that the moleculeThe variety of identical atoms present.The number of lone pairs current in the molecule.The the contrary of the molecule.

In the civilization of chemistry, electronegativity is a measure of how strongly an atom can lure an electron towards itself.

More electronegative atom deserve to strongly lure electron and also low electronegative atom deserve to weakly attract the electron.

SO2 link Angle


The SO2 molecule creates the shape of the trigonal planar. The lone pair repulsion among the Oxygen and also Sulfur forms a bent shape and also the angle between the binding is found to be roughly 119-120 degrees.

The position of the atoms in the SO2 is such the the Sulfur atom is present in the center/between both that the Oxygen atoms.

However, the lone pair present on the Sulfur atom reasons repulsion through the lone pair current on the Oxygen atoms causing the V-shape/bent-shaped SO2 molecule.

The bond edge in SO2 = 120 degrees.

For more detailed information about geometry, hybridization, and lewis framework of SO2, you should also refer to the short article on the lewis framework of SO2.

Polar and also Non-Polar Compounds

We every should know that when two atoms form a bond, they basically share electrons from each other.

And also, the is crucial to keep in mind the two various atoms carry out not same share the electron of every other. It is due to the fact that of the electronegativity difference.

The atom with an ext electronegativity attractive the pair of bonded electrons toward itself as compared to the atom of lesser electronegativity.

As per the studies already done, the shortcut formed in between two atoms is polar covalent if the electronegativity distinction lies in between 0.5 and 1.6.

In this bond, the center of an adverse charge does not lie in the center. It would be in ~ the finish of an atom with better electronegativity.

And if the electronegativity difference is lesser 보다 0.5, the shortcut is non-polar covalent. Whereas, if the electronegativity distinction is over 2, the bond is ionic.

For example, in the case of SO2, Oxygen has a greater electronegativity than Sulfur and it makes it polar. The electronegativity the Sulfur is 2.58 whereas the electronegativity of Oxygen is 3.44.

And in the situation of NaCl, the Chlorine atom has a higher electronegativity 보다 Sodium, due to which the Chlorine atom traction the electron shared pair in the direction of itself.

If you are a student of science, it is an extremely helpful to remember that as you move right in the routine table of chemistry, the electronegativity of elements gets higher.

Also, as you move up in the regular table, the electronegativity of the elements gets higher.

Thus, if you desire to check if a molecule is polar or not.

You should note down the value of electronegativity the atoms affiliated in the molecule, the variety of lone pairs and bonds.

And the overall geometrical shape of the molecule. This information is sufficient to conclude even if it is the molecule is polar or non-polar.


In this article, i tried come cover the polarity the sulfur dioxide, and the factors that influence the polarity, just how to inspect the polarity of a molecule v the information required to conclude.

See more: What Parts Of The Atom Are Involved In Chemical Bonding? The Structure Of The Atom

I hope, ns cleared her all doubts regarding the polarity that SO2 and also made you recognize the fundamentals that the polar and also non-polar bonds.