Is CO2 polar or nonpolar?


Quick Answer

Carbon dioxide, which has the chemical formula CO2, is non-polar. The symmetrical nature of the carbon dioxide bonds cancels the dipole, which is why carbon dioxide is non-polar.

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Full Answer

Polar bonds are bonds between atoms that have electronegativities that differ by more than 0.4 units, according to the University of Illinois. The arrangement of polar bonds and the resulting geometry of the molecules determines whether a molecule, such as carbon dioxide, is polar or non-polar. As the difference of electronegativity in a bond becomes greater, the bond becomes more polar. Carbon dioxide has a linear geometry with two identical oxygen atoms attached to a central carbon atom.

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