Lewis Structure of NF5 (With 5 Simple Steps to Draw!)

Lewis Structure of NF5

Ready to learn how to draw the lewis structure of NF5?

Awesome!

Here, I have explained 5 simple steps to draw the lewis dot structure of NF5 (along with images).

So, if you are ready to go with these 5 simple steps, then let’s dive right into it!

Lewis structure of NF5 contains five single bonds between the Nitrogen (N) atom and each Fluorine (F) atom. The Nitrogen atom (N) is at the center and it is surrounded by 5 Fluorine atoms (F). The Nitrogen atom does not have a lone pair while all the 5 Fluorine atoms have 3 lone pairs.

Let’s draw and understand this lewis dot structure step by step.

(Note: Take a pen and paper with you and try to draw this lewis structure along with me. I am sure you will definitely learn how to draw lewis structure of NF5).

5 Steps to Draw the Lewis Structure of NF5

Step #1: Calculate the total number of valence electrons

Here, the given molecule is NF5. In order to draw the lewis structure of NF5, first of all you have to find the total number of valence electrons present in the NF5 molecule.
(Valence electrons are the number of electrons present in the outermost shell of an atom).

So, let’s calculate this first.

Calculation of valence electrons in NF5

  • For Nitrogen:

Nitrogen is a group 15 element on the periodic table.

Hence, the valence electrons present in nitrogen is 5 (see below image).

  • For Fluorine: 

Fluorine is a group 17 element on the periodic table.

Hence, the valence electrons present in fluorine is 7 (see below image).

Hence in a NF5 molecule, 

Valence electrons given by Nitrogen (N) atom = 5
Valence electrons given by each Fluorine (F) atom = 7
So, total number of Valence electrons in NF5 molecule = 5 + 7(5) = 40

Step #2: Select the center atom

While selecting the atom, always put the least electronegative atom at the center. 

(Remember: Fluorine is the most electronegative element on the periodic table and the electronegativity decreases as we move right to left in the periodic table as well as top to bottom in the periodic table).

Here in the NF5 molecule, if we compare the nitrogen atom (N) and Fluorine atom (F), then the nitrogen is less electronegative than fluorine.

So, nitrogen should be placed in the center and the remaining 5 fluorine atoms will surround it.

step 1

Step #3: Put two electrons between the atoms to represent a chemical bond

Now in the above sketch of NF5 molecule, put the two electrons (i.e electron pair) between each nitrogen atom and fluorine atom to represent a chemical bond between them.

step 2

These pairs of electrons present between the Nitrogen (N) and Fluorine (F) atoms form a chemical bond, which bonds the nitrogen and fluorine atoms with each other in a NF5 molecule.

Step #4: Complete the octet (or duplet) on outside atoms. If the valence electrons are left, then put the valence electrons pair on the central atom

Don’t worry, I’ll explain!

In the Lewis structure of NF5, the outer atoms are fluorine atoms.

So now, you have to complete the octet on these fluorine atoms (because fluorine requires 8 electrons to have a complete outer shell).

step 3

Now, you can see in the above image that all the fluorine atoms form an octet.

Also, all the 40 valence electrons of NF5 molecule (as calculated in step #1) are used in the above structure. So there are no remaining electron pairs.

Hence there is no change in the above sketch of NF5.

Let’s move to the next step.

Step #5: Final step – Check the stability of lewis structure by calculating the formal charge on each atom

Now, you have come to the final step and here you have to check the formal charge on nitrogen atom (N) as well as each fluorine atom (F).

For that, you need to remember the formula of formal charge;

Formal charge = Valence electrons – Nonbonding electrons – (Bonding electrons)/2

step 4
  • For Nitrogen:
    Valence electrons = 5 (as it is in group 15)
    Nonbonding electrons = 0
    Bonding electrons = 10
  • For Fluorine:
    Valence electron = 7 (as it is in group 17)
    Nonbonding electrons = 6
    Bonding electrons = 2
Formal charge=Valence electronsNonbonding electrons(Bonding electrons)/2
N=5010/2=0
F=762/2=0

So you can see above that the formal charges on nitrogen as well as fluorine are “zero”.

Hence, there will not be any change in the above structure and the above lewis structure of NF5 is the final stable structure only.

Each electron pair (:) in the lewis dot structure of NF5 represents the single bond ( | ). So the above lewis dot structure of NF5 can also be represented as shown below.

nf5 lewis structure

Related lewis structures for your practice:
Lewis Structure of SiO
Lewis Structure of AlI3
Lewis Structure of PF2-
Lewis Structure of SI4
Lewis Structure of GaCl3 

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