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Arrange the following in decreasing order of bond angle 1) NH3 2) PH3 3) AsH3 4) SbH3 with proper reasoning

Asked by Ashu Jain 17th October 2013, 12:21 PM
Answered by Expert

NH3 > PH3 > AsH3 > SbH3 > BiH3

N is a smaller central atom, and additionally, it is more electronegative. It attracts all the electrons closer to itself.

At smaller distances, the repulsion between bond pair electrons increases. There will be repulsion between H-H atoms.

 When the central atom gets smaller and smaller, steric (repulsive) effects between the outer atoms prevent them from "touching" each other. So, smaller central atoms (N in NH3) give rise to larger bond angles. So, the H-N-H bond angle should be significantly larger than the H-P-H angle.

When the central atom is big enough that the H-H distance is large compared to the size of the H atom, the steric effects grow vanishingly small. Hence, the decrease in bond angle from say, AsH3 to SbH3 will be negligible.
NH3 >> PH3 > AsH3 > SbH3 (and all angles are less than 109.5 deg)

Answered by Expert 18th October 2013, 11:53 AM
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