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Hydrogen Bonding Forces

Hydrogen bonding force is a specialized electrostatic force that is usually created by the electrical attraction between the hydrogen of one molecule with the oxygen of another.  When the single electron orbiting a hydrogen atom is pulled away by another atom in a molecule, a strong electromagnetic attraction is created by the exposed hydrogen proton.  The hydrogen bonding force of a solvent increases as the number of exposed hydrogen atoms in a molecule increases.

Determining Dissolving Power

The properties of solvents vary because the strength and the nature of the component forces binding them together vary.  In order to predict whether a solvent will be able to dissolve a solute it is necessary to determine the cumulative effect of the component forces that make up the van der Waals force for that solvent.  Click "Activity" on the menu to the left to learn how to predict the solubility of polymers in solvents.

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