HCl is recognized as hydrochloric acid or muriatic acid. It is among the members of hydrogen halides (HX). Hydrogen halides are not natural diatomic molecules and also act as Arrhenius acids owing to their propensity to shed proton in the solution. The X is a member the the halogen family members (group 17) and hence, it can be fluorine, chlorine, bromine, and iodine.

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Hydrochloric acid is a colorless and transparent solution of hydrogen chloride in water. It is a strong acid with a pungent smell.

The melting and also boiling point out of the hydrogen chloride solution room not solved as they depend upon the concentration of its aqueous solution. Similarly, the values of pH and density the the hydrogen chloride solution are not fixed.

If we open a bottle of focused HCl solution, we deserve to observe the fumes in the air through a pungent smell.Hydrochloric acid is present on ours stomach and also helps in the cradle of food. The high concentration the this acid in the stomach leads to acidity problems.

HCl is provided in the synthetic of assorted organic and inorganic compounds and also it is also used because that the rebirth of ion exchanges, which are offered for the purification that water.

So, is HCl Ionic or Covalent? HCl is a covalent compound since the electronegativity difference in between hydrogen and also chloride is much less than 2.0. However, the is no a true covalent compound together chlorine is more electronegative than hydrogen and hence, that will attract a mutual pair that electrons in the direction of itself. Hence, the HCl molecule is a covalent compound v a 17 % ionic character.

The H-Cl bond will act as a dipole through a partial hopeful charge and a partial negative charge ~ above the hydrogen atom and also chlorine atom, respectively, in the HCl molecule.

The value of partial fee in HCl is ±0. 027 x 10−18 C.

Let us talk about the covalent nature the hydrogen chloride in detail.

For that, we must start through the basics of chemistry bonding, i.e., what is a chemical bond and also how that is formed.

Chemical Bond

First that all, permit us have a look in ~ a modern periodic table.


As us all are conscious that atom of the contemporary periodic table execute not exist easily in nature other than for group 18 members. Hence, they integrate either v the exact same atom or v a various atom, causing the formation of elements and also compounds, respectively.

This force of attraction between two very same atoms or different atoms, which helps in happen them together is known as a chemical bond.

How chemical bonds space formed?

An atom consists of subatomic corpuscle i.e., protons, electrons, and neutrons. The end of these three particles, only electrons take part in the formation of a bond.

We know that one atomic variety of an atom corresponds to the variety of electrons in one atom.

Now, a question arises that whether every electrons current in one atom take part in the link formation?

No, all electrons execute not participate in the bond formation. The just electrons, which are present in the outermost covering of the atom, add towards the shortcut formation. This electrons are recognized as Valence Electrons.

The electrons, which are current in the inner shell of the atom, are recognized as core Electrons and they carry out not participate in the shortcut formation.

Hence, a chemical bond is created when there is share of electron density between two atoms. This sharing of electron density may be same or unequal between atoms.


Types of chemistry Bonds

There are two varieties of chemical bonds, i beg your pardon are existing in the molecules i.e. Ionic and Covalent Bonds.

Ionic Bonds: The ionic binding are formed by transporting electron (s) native one atom to an additional atom. Over there is an electrostatic pressure of attraction between cations and also anions in one ionic bond.

Covalent Bonds: The covalent bonds are formed by share of one electron pair (s) between two atoms. The covalent bonds are further classified as single, double, and also triple bonds depending on the number of electron pairs mutual within two atoms.

Now, exactly how to identify whether a particular chemical bond is an ionic link or a covalent bond?

Obviously, us cannot prize this inquiry by looking in ~ atoms involved in shortcut formation. We require a quantitative parameter to distinguish the ionic and also covalent bonds. The parameter is Electronegativity values.

Let united state know, what is electronegativity?


It is the building of one atom through which an atom attracts the mutual electron pair in the direction of it. The electronegativity values of the atoms room taken indigenous the Pauling scale.

If the electronegativity difference between two atom in a chemistry bond is greater than 2.0, climate the chemical bond is taken into consideration an Ionic bond. However, if this difference is less than 2.0 ~ above the Pauling scale, climate there is a covalent bond.

Why is HCl Covalent in nature?

In the instance of Hydrogen chloride (HCl),

The electronegativity worth of the hydrogen atom = 2.20

The electronegativity value of the chlorine atom = 3.16

The electronegativity distinction of the H-Cl bond = 0.96

The electronegativity distinction of the H-Cl bond is only 0.96 on the Pauling scale, describe the covalent nature the the H-Cl bond.

Hence, hydrogen chloride is a covalent compound.

However, hydrogen chloride is not a true covalent compound. Why is it so and what room true covalent compounds?

Why is HCl not a true Covalent Compound?

A true covalent bond is developed when over there is an equal sharing that the electron from each atom in the molecule such together homonuclear molecules i.e., H-H, F-F, and also Cl-Cl, etc.

However, the covalent character or we deserve to say purity of covalency decreases when there are heteronuclear molecules. For example H-Cl, H-Br, and H-I. In heteronuclear molecules, atoms carry out not share electron (s) equally since of the distinction in the electronegativity value.

Hence, HCl is not a true covalent compound as the chlorine atom will tempt a mutual pair of electrons towards itself owing to its higher electronegativity (3.16) 보다 the hydrogen atom (2.20).


Or we can say that the H-Cl link in the hydrogen chloride link is a polar covalent bond. It method that the H-Cl link act as a dipole with a partial confident charge top top the hydrogen atom and also a partial an adverse charge on the chlorine atom.

It would be quite exciting if we have the right to calculate the partial charge on the atom. So, let united state calculate the partial charge on the hydrogen and chlorine atom in hydrogen chloride.

The fee is identified as the proportion of the dipole minute of the molecule (µ) and also the distance in between the 2 atoms (d) in a polar covalent bond. The formula because that measurement of fee is together follows:

Q = μ/d

The dipole moment is measure up in D (Debye) and also the unit for the distance is m and hence, the fee is measure up in D/m or C (Coulomb).

The dipole minute of hydrogen chloride is 1.05 D and also the distance in between the hydrogen and also chlorine atom in the hydrogen chloride is 127.4 * 10-12 m.

1 D = 3.33 × 10−30 C. M

If we substitute the worths in the above equation, the partial charge on the hydrogen atom comes the end to be 0.027 x 10-18 C.

There will certainly be equal but opposite charge on the chlorine atom i.e., – 0.027 x 10-18 C Therefore, the value of partial fee in hydrogen chloride compound is ±0. 027 x 10−18 C.

Our following step would certainly be to calculation the percentage of electrons transferred from the hydrogen atom to the chlorine atom in hydrogen chloride, i m sorry is known Ionic personality in the covalent bond.

As we recognize the fee on one electron is 1. 6022 × 10−19 C.

Percentage of Ionic personality = (Partial charge on the atom ∗ 100) / fee on one electron

= (0. 027 x 10−18 ∗ 100)/1. 6022 × 10−19 C

= 17 %

Hence, only 17 % electron density has been transferred from the hydrogen atom to the chlorine atom in the hydrogen chloride.

It confirms the the H-Cl shortcut in the hydrogen chloride is a polar covalent bond, no an ionic bond. That is one more criterion for distinguishing in between Ionic and also covalent bonds.

Hence, the hydrogen chloride molecule is a covalent compound through a 17 % ionic character.


In this article, we have studied the covalent nature of the hydrogen chloride compound.

In brief, hydrogen chloride is a covalent compound based on the electronegativity difference between two atom of the HCl molecule. However, this covalent compound has some ionic character, which is calculated to it is in 17 %. That confirms the nature the the H-Cl shortcut in the HCl molecule together a polar covalent bond.

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In conclusion, the hydrogen chloride molecule is a polar covalent compound having ±0.027 x 10−18 C partial charge with a 17% ionic character.