When us talk around the hybridization the PCl3 students must not confuse it through PCl5. PCl3 is sp3 hybridized. Let us look at just how this hybridization occurs and we will additionally understand the molecular geometry of this compound.

You are watching: What is the molecular geometry, or shape, of phosphorus trichloride (pcl3)?

Name of the MoleculePhosphorus Trichloride
Molecular FormulaPCl3
Hybridization Typesp3
Bond AngleLess than 109o
GeometryTrigonal Pyramidal

What is the Hybridization that Phosphorus Trichloride?

If us look in ~ the molecule the PCl3 that is made up of phosphorus and also chlorine molecules However, the hybridization usually occurs within the central atom which is phosphorus. Now if us look at the digital structure in the soil state of phosphorus it will certainly be 1s2, 2s2, 2p6, 3s2, 3p2. The valence shell in phosphorus is 5. Throughout the excited stated one of the s electrons move to an north d orbital resulting in the adjust in digital configuration. In excited the electronic configuration will change to 1s2, 2s2, 2p6, 3s2, 3px1, 3py1, 3pz1. Now, 3 unpaired electrons will be supplied to kind bonds with 3 chlorine atoms. Throughout the development of the bond, 4 orbitals (3s2, 3px1, 3py1, 3pz1) will hybridize to type 4 tantamount sp3 hybrid orbitals. One of the hybrid orbitals will contain one lone pair of electrons.


The P-Cl bonds space basically created when the sp3 hybrid orbitals overlap v 3p orbitals of chlorine which are singly occupied. Further, every chlorine atom additionally holds 3 lone pairs. All in all, if us look at PCl3, there are 3 electron pairs, 3 bond pairs and one lone pair that electrons.

Important Points come Remember

The central atom phosphorus is involved in sp3 hybridisation with 3 bond pairs and one lone pair.In the excited proclaimed one of the s electrons move to an north d orbital causing the readjust in electronic configuration.The P-Cl covalent bonds are created as a result of sp3 hybrid orbitals overlapping v 3p orbitals of chlorine.

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PCl3 molecular Geometry and also Bond Angles


Looking at the PCl3 molecular geometry the is trigonal pyramidal v a bond angle of approx. 103o. The is mainly as result of the disproportionate influence or higher repulsion the the phosphorus lone pair which provides it deviate native the ideal angle the 109o.