Bond order is a measurement of the number of electrons involved in bonds between two atoms in a molecule and relates to the stability of the chemical bond. Bonds are classified as single, double or triple. For example, diatomic nitrogen (N2) has a triple bond between the two atoms (N≡N) while acetylene (C2H2) has a bond order of three between the two carbon atoms and single bonds between the carbon atoms and the hydrogen atoms (H−C≡C−H). Bond length is inversely proportional to bond order.
Bond order is calculated by the equation:
Bond order = (number of bonding electrons - number of antibonding electrons)/2
If bond order = 0, the two atoms are not bonded. While a compound can have a bond order of zero, this value is not possible for elements.
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