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By the end of this section, you will be able to:
  • List the defining traits of coordination compounds
  • Describe the structures of complexes containing monodentate and polydentate ligands
  • Use standard nomenclature rules to name coordination compounds
  • Explain and provide examples of geometric and optical isomerism
  • Identify several natural and technological occurrences of coordination compounds

The hemoglobin in your blood, the chlorophyll in green plants, vitamin B-12, and the catalyst used in the manufacture of polyethylene all contain coordination compounds. Ions of the metals, especially the transition metals, are likely to form complexes. Many of these compounds are highly colored ( [link] ). In the remainder of this chapter, we will consider the structure and bonding of these remarkable compounds.

This figure shows six containers. Each is filled with a different color liquid. The first appears to be clear; the second appears to be purple; the third appears to be red; the fourth appears to be teal; the fifth appears to be blue; and the sixth also appears to be clear.
Metal ions that contain partially filled d subshell usually form colored complex ions; ions with empty d subshell ( d 0 ) or with filled d subshells ( d 10 ) usually form colorless complexes. This figure shows, from left to right, solutions containing [ M (H 2 O) 6 ] n+ ions with M = Sc 3+ ( d 0 ), Cr 3+ ( d 3 ), Co 2+ ( d 7 ), Ni 2+ ( d 8 ), Cu 2+ ( d 9 ), and Zn 2+ ( d 10 ). (credit: Sahar Atwa)

Remember that in most main group element compounds, the valence electrons of the isolated atoms combine to form chemical bonds that satisfy the octet rule. For instance, the four valence electrons of carbon overlap with electrons from four hydrogen atoms to form CH 4 . The one valence electron leaves sodium and adds to the seven valence electrons of chlorine to form the ionic formula unit NaCl ( [link] ). Transition metals do not normally bond in this fashion. They primarily form coordinate covalent bonds, a form of the Lewis acid-base interaction in which both of the electrons in the bond are contributed by a donor (Lewis base) to an electron acceptor (Lewis acid). The Lewis acid in coordination complexes, often called a central metal    ion (or atom), is often a transition metal or inner transition metal, although main group elements can also form coordination compounds . The Lewis base donors, called ligands , can be a wide variety of chemicals—atoms, molecules, or ions. The only requirement is that they have one or more electron pairs, which can be donated to the central metal. Most often, this involves a donor atom    with a lone pair of electrons that can form a coordinate bond to the metal.

Three electron dot models are shown. To the left, a central C atom is shown with H atoms bonded above, below, to the left, and to the right. Between the C atom and each H atom are two electron dots, one red, and one black, next to each other in pairs between the atoms. The second structure to the right shows N superscript plus sign followed by a C l atom in brackets. This C l atom has pairs of electron dots above, below, left, and right of the element symbol. A single electron dot on the left side of the symbol is shown in red. All others are black. Outside the brackets to the right, a negative sign appears as a superscript. The third structure on the far right has a central S c atom. This atom is surrounded by six pairs of evenly-spaced electron dots. These pairs of dots are positioned between the S c atom and each of the O atoms from six H subscript 2 O molecules. This entire structure is within brackets to the right of which is the superscript 3 plus.
(a) Covalent bonds involve the sharing of electrons, and ionic bonds involve the transferring of electrons associated with each bonding atom, as indicated by the colored electrons. (b) However, coordinate covalent bonds involve electrons from a Lewis base being donated to a metal center. The lone pairs from six water molecules form bonds to the scandium ion to form an octahedral complex. (Only the donated pairs are shown.)

The coordination sphere    consists of the central metal ion or atom plus its attached ligands. Brackets in a formula enclose the coordination sphere; species outside the brackets are not part of the coordination sphere. The coordination number    of the central metal ion or atom is the number of donor atoms bonded to it. The coordination number for the silver ion in [Ag(NH 3 ) 2 ] + is two ( [link] ). For the copper(II) ion in [CuCl 4 ] 2− , the coordination number is four, whereas for the cobalt(II) ion in [Co(H 2 O) 6 ] 2+ the coordination number is six. Each of these ligands is monodentate    , from the Greek for “one toothed,” meaning that they connect with the central metal through only one atom. In this case, the number of ligands and the coordination number are equal.

Questions & Answers

what is hydrocarbon
Sensible Reply
this is an organic compound that consist of hydrogen and ox
Okafor
why is isotonic solution the as blood
Hawa Reply
Elaborate more pls
Adeyinka
could you rephrase the question please?
Elaine
what is hydrocarbon? pls
Sensible
Hydrocarbon are organic compound consisting of hydrogen and carbon atoms
Adeyinka
thanks
Sensible
why is electrolytes really active in water
Sensible
relationship between an orbit and a shell
Hawa Reply
relationship between orbit and a shell
Hawa
What a homogenous mixture
Allison Reply
Define homologous series
Chizoba Reply
it is an organic compound having the same chemical properties which differs in a successive member of CH4
Okafor
when iron is exposed to moisture and it rusts,the value of deltaG for the reaction is
Mary Reply
what is chemistry
Siyanbola Reply
it is a branch of science that deals with the mixture of chemicals and properties and uses of matter
Okafor
define aci according to Lewis
Ryhanna Reply
an acid is an electron pair acceptor according to lewis
Mary
What is a homogenous mixture
Allison
the third ionization energy of aluminium
sanmi Reply
name the allotrope of carbon used in gas masks
Moses Reply
Discuss the synthesis of sucrose
Ojiya Reply
What is a glycoside and discuss the formation
Ojiya
explain the transitioning of glucose molecules from Fischer projection of glucose to the Haworth projection
Rosey Reply
what is quantum
hezekiah Reply
what are metalliod
hezekiah
Metalloids are substances having the characteristics of both metals and non-metals
Ngwesse
what is acid
Tobi
define acid according to lewis
Ryhanna
Acid is an electron acceptor
Adeyinka
Wat z quantum
Adeyinka
what is valency
odukoya Reply
The number of chemical bonds the atoms of a certain element can form.
kenicia
what is ionization energy?
Hussniz Reply
ionization energy is qualitatively defined as the minimum amount of energy required to remove the most loosely bound electron, the valence electron, of an isolated neutral gaseous atom, molecule or io
Tobi
Wow. Thumb 👍 up
Adeyinka
Very explanatory. Tanx
Adeyinka

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Source:  OpenStax, Chemistry. OpenStax CNX. May 20, 2015 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11760/1.9
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