What’s The Molecular Geometry Of SO32?

The molecule so32 is a sulfite that is characterized by a trigonal pyramidal molecular geometry. It also has a tetrahedral electron pair geometry. The molecule has a total of 26 valence electrons in its Lewis structure. 

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It has a VSEPR concept which shows that the ideal electron geometry is tetrahedral. The lone pair of electrons on the central sulfur atom causes lone pair-bond pair electronic repulsions that distort the shape and molecular geometry of so32. 

Hence, the molecule is not in its ideal electron pair geometry but is tetrahedral in its actual molecular and atomic geometry. This is why the sulfite ion has the VSEPR concept of an AX3N generic formula as it is a combination of 4 electron density regions around the central S-atom out of which one lone pair is located on that atom. 

This lone pair-bond pair electronic polarity is very different from the bond pair-bond pair repulsions that occur between the sulfite ion’s O-atoms and its S-atom. Moreover, the presence of the lone pair on the central S-atom leads to asymmetrical trigonal pyramidal shapes and an enhanced polarity effect overall. 

In this tutorial, you will learn how to draw the Lewis structure of SO32- step by step using the total valence electrons concept. You will also learn how to change the location of double bonds and lone pairs to draw resonance structures. 

1. SO3 2- – Is It A Trigonal Pyramidal?

The sulfite ion has a trigonal pyramidal shape and its electronic geometry is a tetrahedral ideal electron pair geometry. The sulfite ion is hybridized and it has an sp3 hybridization in its Lewis structure. The sulfite ion’s hybridization is determined by the number of nonbonding domains that are present on the central S-atom in the molecule. 

2. Sulfur Trioxide – Is It A Tetrahedral? 

The Lewis structure of SO3 displays a total of 24 valence electrons. This is because the sulfite ion consists of 1 S-atom and 3 O-atoms. In addition, the sulfite ion is negative 2 charged because of the lone pair on the central sulfur atom. 

3. Sulfur oxidation State – Is It Positive Or Negative? 

The oxidation state of the sulfite ion in its Lewis structure is positive. In contrast, the oxidation state of the SO3 ion is negative. The sulfite ion also has a lone pair of electrons on the center S-atom in its Lewis structure. 

  1. How Does the Molecular Geometry of SO3 Differ From the Molecular Geometry of SO32?

The molecular geometry of SO3 is tetrahedral whereas the sulfite ion’s molecule has a trigonal pyramidal molecular shape. The sulfite ion’s molecular and electronic geometry is determined by the hybridization of its central S-atom. 

  1. The sulfur atom and O-atom in SO3 have a bond angle of 107.5 degrees while the sulfite ion’s bond angle is 90 degrees.

The bond angle is an important aspect of the shape and polarity of molecules. It is also an indicator of whether the molecule is linear, trigonal planar, tetrahedral, or trigonal bi-pyramidal.