Choose the substance with the highest viscosity. I have the correct answer, but I need a little help understanding it.

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Hello. I had a problem in my homework that I have a little trouble understanding. Originally, I assumed AsBr5 had the highest viscosity since it had the highest molar mass. However, my teacher it was wrong and OBr2 was the correct answer. I wouldn't have guessed that especially since it has the lowest molar mass. Do know why that is? Does it have to do with polarity?

Choose the substance with the highest viscosity.

A: SbBr3

B: AsBr5

C: IBr2

D: BeBr2

E: OBr2

Thank you and sorry if this is a dumb question.


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level 1
· 6m · edited 6m
Viscosity has to do with how the molecules interact, if you try and yank them apart, how hard would that be?

Obviously one way to get there is long polymers like rubber or starch that can get all wound up in one another, but these molecules are all quite small, so that's not it.

So we next need to think about other attractive forces. The the primary thing to look for here would be molecular dipole interactions.

A and B are pyramidal, which is a good start.

C is linear & symmetric. No net dipole, low viscosity.

D and E are bent, which is a great start.

Out of A, B, D, and E, then, all of these have similar bond dipole strengths... the only really big differentiator is that E is MUCH lighter than any other molecule here, and so will be much more densly packed and much more affected by dipole interactions, so E is the best answer.


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level 1
· 6m

I'm not sure if its correct or not but I think it may have to do with intermolecular interactions.

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level 1
· 6m

Lighter compounds are more easily affected by intermolecular forces


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