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Topic: Chlorine and Boron Triflouride  (Read 4211 times)

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OpenIntro

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Chlorine and Boron Triflouride
« on: September 16, 2004, 06:07:48 PM »
When these two react, I know that a hybrid compound is formed, with a positive charge on the chlorine that is bonded to the now negatively charged boron. My question is, who attacks who? Is it chlorine attacking the empty side of Boron and sharing the electrons?

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Re:Chlorine and Boron Triflouride
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2004, 06:31:33 PM »
Do you mean the reaction with Cl2 or with Cl- ions?  In either case, I don't think that there is a positive charge on the chlorine attached to the boron.

With respect to "who attacks who" by convention electrons always do the attacking, so it would be the electrons from chlorine (or chloride) that attack the vacant p orbital on boron to form the tetrahedral complex.  The attack can come from either side because BF3 is trigonal planar.  The product is probably a covalently bound complex, so sharing of electrons.  The electronegativity difference between B and Cl is boderline for ionic vs. covalent, but the B is already electron deficient from the 3 Fs.

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Re:Chlorine and Boron Triflouride
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2004, 03:33:01 PM »
The B-Cl bond formed would experience charge seperation, in virtue of being a dative bond

Chlorine contains the required lone pair for the formation of B-Cl bond. It acts as the nucleophile. Boron in BF3 is electron deficient, so it acts an electrophile.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2004, 03:36:24 PM by geodome »
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