Is CH3CH3 polar or non-polar? – Polarity of CH3CH3

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Is CH3CH3 polar or non-polar?


CH3CH3 is non-polar.  


Ethane (CH3-CH3) consists of non-polar C-C bonds and very weakly polar C-H bonds.

The small C-H dipole moments get canceled equally in the symmetrical tetrahedral shape and geometry of CH3CH3; thus, it is overall non-polar (net µ = 0).

CH3CH3 consists of two single covalently bonded carbon (C) atoms at the center. Each C-atom is bonded to three hydrogens (H) atoms.

There are no lone pairs of electrons on any of the two C-atoms.

Thus, the molecule occupies a symmetrical tetrahedral shape w.r.t each C-atom.

The central C-C bond is non-polar as it is formed between two identical atoms having a zero electronegativity difference.

The C-H bonds are weakly polar, having an electronegativity difference of 0.35 units between the bonded carbon (E.N = 2.55) and hydrogen (E.N = 2.20) atoms.

However, the small C-H dipole moments get canceled in the symmetrical tetrahedral shape leading to an overall non-polar CH3CH3 molecule with net zero dipole moment (net µ = 0).

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