Lewis Structure of XeO3 (With 6 Simple Steps to Draw!)

Lewis structure of XeO3

I’m super excited to teach you the lewis structure of XeO3 in just 6 simple steps.

Infact, I’ve also given the step-by-step images for drawing the lewis dot structure of XeO3 molecule.

So, if you are ready to go with these 6 simple steps, then let’s dive right into it!

Lewis structure of XeO3 contains three double bonds between the Xenon (Xe) atom and Oxygen (O) atoms. The Xenon atom (Xe) is at the center and it is surrounded by 3 Oxygen atoms (O). The Xenon atom (Xe) has 1 lone pair and all the three Oxygen atoms (O) have 2 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 XeO3).

6 Steps to Draw the Lewis Structure of XeO3

Step #1: Calculate the total number of valence electrons

Here, the given molecule is XeO3. In order to draw the lewis structure of XeO3, first of all you have to find the total number of valence electrons present in the XeO3 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 XeO3

  • For Xenon: 

Xenon is a group 18 element on the periodic table. [1]

Hence, the valence electron present in xenon is also 8 (see below image).

  • For Oxygen:

Oxygen is a group 16 element on the periodic table. [2]

Hence, the valence electron present in oxygen is 6 (see below image).

Hence in a XeO3 molecule, 

Valence electrons given by Xenon (Xe) atom = 8
Valence electrons given by each Oxygen (O) atom = 6
So, total number of Valence electrons in XeO3 molecule = 8 + 6(3) = 26

Step #2: Select the center atom

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

Here in the XeO3 molecule, if we compare the xenon atom (Xe) and oxygen atom (O), then the xenon is less electronegative than oxygen.

So, xenon should be placed in the center and the 3 oxygen 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 XeO3, put the two electrons (i.e electron pair) between each xenon atom and oxygen atom to represent a chemical bond between them.

step 2

These pairs of electrons present between the Xenon (Xe) and Oxygen (O) atoms form a chemical bond, which bonds the xenon and oxygen atoms with each other in a XeO3 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 XeO3, the outer atoms are oxygen atoms.

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

step 3

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

Also, only 24 valence electrons of XeO3 are used in the above structure.

But there are total 26 valence electrons in XeO3 molecule (as calculated in step #1).

So the number of electrons left to be kept on the central atom = 26 – 24 = 2.

So let’s keep these 2 electrons (i.e electron pair) on the central atom.

step 4

Now, let’s move to the next step.

Step #5: Check whether the central atom has octet or not

In this step, we have to check whether the central atom (i.e xenon) has an octet or not. 

In simple words, we have to check whether the central Xenon (Xe) atom has 8 electrons or not.

step 5

As you can see from the above image, the central atom (i.e Xenon), is having 8 electrons. So it fulfills the octet rule.

Step #6: 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 xenon atom (Xe) as well as each oxygen atom (O).

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

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

step 6
  • For Xenon:
    Valence electrons = 8 (as it is in group 18)
    Nonbonding electrons = 2
    Bonding electrons = 6
  • For Oxygen:
    Valence electron = 6 (as it is in group 16)
    Nonbonding electrons = 6
    Bonding electrons = 2
Formal charge=Valence electronsNonbonding electrons(Bonding electrons)/2

So you can see above that the formal charge on xenon is +3 and the formal charge on all the three oxygen atoms is -1.

This indicates that the above lewis structure of XeO3 is not stable and so we have to minimize the charges to get a more stable lewis structure.

This can be done by shifting the lone pair from negatively charged oxygen atoms to the positively charged xenon atom to form a double bond.

step 7

Now, in the above structure, you can see that the charges are minimized and the above lewis structure of XeO3 is the final stable structure.

Each electron pair (:) in the lewis dot structure of XeO3 represents the single bond ( | ). So the above lewis dot structure of XeO3 can also be represented as shown below.

XeO3 Lewis structure

Related lewis structures for your practice:
Lewis Structure of H2CO3
Lewis Structure of SBr2
Lewis Structure of HOCl
Lewis Structure of C6H6 (Benzene)
Lewis Structure of NBr3 

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Jay is an educator and has helped more than 100,000 students in their studies by providing simple and easy explanations on different science-related topics. With a desire to make learning accessible for everyone, he founded Knords Learning, an online learning platform that provides students with easily understandable explanations.

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