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Topic: molecular solids vs covalent network solids  (Read 25906 times)

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Offline orgo814

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molecular solids vs covalent network solids
« on: March 14, 2012, 10:57:49 PM »
Can anyone help me differentiate between network solids and molecular solids? I know what they are but how can I tell by looking at a molecule whether it's a network or molecular solid? Is it really just allotropes of carbon and silicon molecules which are network solids? Any help is appreciated, thank you.

Offline NathanielZhu

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Re: molecular solids vs covalent network solids
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2012, 11:04:46 PM »
Correct me if I'm wrong but aren't network solids simply ionic lattices and molecular solids formed from covalent bonds?
For example, a NaF lattice is a network solid because NaF is ionic, and a diamond is a molecular solid because it's merely a bunch of Carbon atoms bonded covalently.

Offline orgo814

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Re: molecular solids vs covalent network solids
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2012, 07:35:19 PM »
No, a network solid is an extensive network of covalent bonds.

Offline PIQgoogleme

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Re: molecular solids vs covalent network solids
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2012, 08:06:19 PM »
Molecular solid: think ice. There are covalent bonds present, but they're within a molecule, not between the molecules. What holds the molecule together are dispersion forces, dipole-dipole interactions or hydrogen bonds.

Covalent network solid: Think diamond. All of the carbon atoms in the entire substance are covalently bonded, forming a big network. Technically, a diamond is like one big molecule.

Offline XGen

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Re: molecular solids vs covalent network solids
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2012, 08:57:56 PM »
I know what they are but how can I tell by looking at a molecule whether it's a network or molecular solid?

If you are looking at a drawing of a molecule, it is very simple. A network solid is not composed of separate molecules, but rather it is one gigantic molecule. Therefore, there should be no set drawing of a "molecule" of a network solid.

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