How to find out the geometry of nitrate ion

Structure of molecule depends on its hybridization and lone pares of central atom.

  • Hybridization of any molecule can be determined by the following formula:

H=1/2{ V + X - C + A}

V=no. of valence electrons in central atom

X=no. of monovalent atoms around the central atom

C= +ve charge on cation

A= -ve charge on anion

If H= 2, it means hybridization is sp.

If H= 3, it means hybridization is sp2.

If H= 4, it means hybridization is sp3.



Now the given molecule is NO3-.

Here central atom is N.

V= 5

X= 0

C= 0

A= 1

H=1/2{5 + 0 - 0 + 1) = 3

So hybridization of N in NO3- is sp2.


  •  There is no lone pair on the N atom.

Hence there are 3 sp2 hybridized molecular orbitals present at 3 corners of a triangle to give the molecule triangular geometry.




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