Elements and Compounds
Chemical Bonding

How does whater form hydrogen bonds?

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Answered 2011-11-20 17:33:28

Water, H2O, is a polar molecule in which the larger, more electronegative oxygen atom develops a partial negative charge, and the smaller, less electronegative hydrogen atoms develop a partial positive charge. The slightly negative oxygen atom of one water molecule is attracted to the slightly positive hydrogen atom of another water molecule. This weak attraction is called a hydrogen bond.

Click on the related link for an illustration of the polar water molecule and hydrogen bonding between water molecules. The dashed lines represent the hydrogen bonds and the δ- represents a partial negative charge, and δ+ represents a partial positive charge.

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