Thursday, July 14, 2011

The name is Bond, Hydrogen Bond

There is a fascinating (and useful) essay A Bond by Any Other Name by Gautam R. Desiraju in Angewandte Chemie International. It discusses the background behind the recent new definition of a hydrogen bond by IUPAC [International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry]. [A detailed report is here]. Here is the new definition:

The hydrogen bond is an attractive interaction between a hydrogen atom from a molecule or a molecular fragment X[BOND]H in which X is more electronegative than H, and an atom or a group of atoms in the same or a different molecule, in which there is evidence of bond formation.

A typical hydrogen bond may be depicted as X[BOND]H⋅⋅⋅Y[BOND]Z, where the three dots denote the bond. X[BOND]H represents the hydrogen-bond donor. The acceptor may be an atom or an anion Y, or a fragment or a molecule Y[BOND]Z, where Y is bonded to Z. In specific cases X and Y can be the same with both X[BOND]H and Y[BOND]H bonds being equal. In any event, the acceptor is an electron-rich region such as, but not limited to, a lone pair in Y or a π-bonded pair in Y[BOND]Z.

Amusingly, one section of the paper is entitled, "The Name is Bond".
More seriously, the paper has a useful section 5.1 List of Criterial useful as evidence (for hydrogen bonding).

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