n. (context chemistry English) Any of several attractive forces that serve to bind atoms together to form molecules
n. an electrical force linking atoms [syn: bond]
A chemical bond is a lasting attraction between atoms that enables the formation of chemical compounds. The bond may result from the electrostatic force of attraction between atoms with opposite charges, or through the sharing of electrons as in the covalent bonds. The strength of chemical bonds varies considerably; there are "strong bonds" such as covalent or ionic bonds and "weak bonds" such as Dipole-dipole interaction, the London dispersion force and hydrogen bonding.
Since opposite charges attract via a simple electromagnetic force, the negatively charged electrons that are orbiting the nucleus and the positively charged protons in the nucleus attract each other. An electron positioned between two nuclei will be attracted to both of them, and the nuclei will be attracted toward electrons in this position. This attraction constitutes the chemical bond. Due to the matter wave nature of electrons and their smaller mass, they must occupy a much larger amount of volume compared with the nuclei, and this volume occupied by the electrons keeps the atomic nuclei relatively far apart, as compared with the size of the nuclei themselves. This phenomenon limits the distance between nuclei and atoms in a bond.
In general, strong chemical bonding is associated with the sharing or transfer of electrons between the participating atoms. The atoms in molecules, crystals, metals and diatomic gases—indeed most of the physical environment around us—are held together by chemical bonds, which dictate the structure and the bulk properties of matter.
All bonds can be explained by quantum theory, but, in practice, simplification rules allow chemists to predict the strength, directionality, and polarity of bonds. The octet rule and VSEPR theory are two examples. More sophisticated theories are valence bond theory which includes orbital hybridization and resonance, and molecular orbital theory which includes linear combination of atomic orbitals and ligand field theory. Electrostatics are used to describe bond polarities and the effects they have on chemical substances.
Usage examples of "chemical bond".
His Nobel Prize was awarded for the application of quantum mechanical insights - resonances, and what is called hybridization of orbitals - to explain the nature of the chemical bond that joins atoms together into molecules.
A chemical bond known as the hydrogen bond has an energy appropriately intermediate between these unreactive and unstable alternatives.
He sucked the chemical bond down his throat and into his lungs, where the glutinous mass swelled and hardened.
All of this can be found in my book The Nature of the Chemical Bond.
Near his left knee, the bulkhead strut had just been all welded and painted after the last encounter, that incident with a rogue Kauld Marauder, and gave off a strong scent of chemical bond.