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Answer to Question #17047 in Inorganic Chemistry for anam ejaz

Question #17047
why the vanderwall radii are generally much larger than covalent radii?
Expert's answer
The covalent radius is always smaller than the corresponding vander Waal's
radius. This is because of the fact that in the formation of a chemical bond,
the two atoms have to come closer to each other. This also explains why covalent
bonds are much stronger than the vander Waal's forces. It is important to note
that since the noble gases ordinarily do not form any covalent bond, in crystals
of noble gases, no chemical forces are operating between the atoms. Hence the
vander Waal's forces are the only attractive forces in these cases. In other
words, the vander Waal's radii constitute the atomic radii of noble gases and
since vander Waal's radii are larger than covalent radii, atomic radii of noble
gases are largest in their respective periods (anomaly).

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