Covalent and Ionic Bonds Differences
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Covalent and Ionic Bonds Differences

The most basic difference between covalent and ionic bonds is that ionic bonds are easier to reproduce or at least they are easier to understand. One can easily look at the periodic table, pick out a metal and a non-metal, and be able to name the combined form, such as in sodium chloride. Covalent bonds simply produce more sophisticated combinations of substances.

 

About Chemical Bonding

Covalent and ionic bonds are two types of chemical bonding. But what is the difference between covalent and ionic bonds? Before we discuss the description of each chemical bonding type, let us talk about chemical bonding and what actually happens when it occurs first.

When two substances combine physically, they are still considered two different substances, only mixed together. However, if they combine in the atomic level, they become something entirely new. This combination in the atomic level produces a new chemical compound which may display physical and chemical characteristics that may not have been present in their parent substances. This is the magic of chemical bonding and it is one of the most amazing fundamental things that occur in nature. What is awesome about it is that atoms can be manipulated to get a desired chemical compound. The most popular and striking example of chemical bonding is the combination of two highly dangerous substances, sodium and chlorine. Individually, these substances pose a threat to human life. Sodium when combined with water can become explosive or at least it can set things on fire. Chlorine is poisonous and it has already been used in chemical warfare. However, when combined at the atomic level, these two dangerous substances produce something that is totally safe, known as sodium chloride, or the table salt.

Covalent Bonds

Covalent bonds occur when two non-metals combine at room temperature and produces a liquid or a gaseous substance. Compounds produced by covalent bonding have a definite shape. Covalent bonds also have low boiling and melting points. In covalent bonding, there is the sharing of electrons. Some of the most common examples of covalent bonds include diphosphorous pentoxide, carbon monoxide, carbon tetrafluoride, methane, ammonia and water.

Ionic Bonds

When one metal atom bonds with one non-metal atom, this chemical bond is called an ionic bond. It produces a compound which is in solid form. It has high boiling and melting points, and it occurs when electrostatic attraction happens between ions that are oppositely charged in a chemical compound. The non-metal atoms are stronger than metal atoms, and between these two opposite ions, the non-metal atom attracts the electron from the metal atom. Common examples of ionic bonds include sodium chloride, silver chloride, iron oxide and the common table salt.

The most basic difference between covalent and ionic bonds is that ionic bonds are easier to reproduce or at least they are easier to understand. One can easily look at the periodic table, pick out a metal and a non-metal, and be able to name the combined form, such as in sodium chloride. Covalent bonds simply produce more sophisticated combinations of substances.

 

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