Theories of the chemical bond and its true nature

Foundations of Chemistry 10 (3):167-176 (2008)
Two different models for chemical bond were developed almost simultaneously after the Schrödinger formulation of quantum theory. These are known as the valence bond (VB) and molecular orbital (MO) theories. Initially chemists preferred the VB theory and ignored the MO theory. Now the VB theory is almost dropped out of currency. The context of discovery and Linus Pauling’s overpowering influence gave the VB theory its initial advantage. The current universal acceptance of the MO theory is due to its ability to provide direct interpretation of many different types of experiments now being pursued. In current research both localized bonds and delocalized charge distributions play important roles and the MO theory has been successful in giving a good account of both.
Keywords Chemical bond  Linus Pauling  R. S. Mulliken  Valence bond theory  Molecular orbital theory
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DOI 10.1007/s10698-008-9049-2
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