TeF4 Lewis structure

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TeF4 Lewis Structure
TeF4 Lewis structure

TeF4 (tellurium tetrafluoride) has one tellurium atom and four fluorine atoms.

In the TeF4 Lewis structure, there are four single bonds around the tellurium atom, with four fluorine atoms attached to it. Each fluorine atom has three lone pairs, and the tellurium atom has one lone pair.


To properly draw the TeF4 Lewis structure, follow these steps:

#1 Draw a rough sketch of the structure
#2 Next, indicate lone pairs on the atoms
#3 Indicate formal charges on the atoms, if necessary

Let’s break down each step in more detail.

#1 Draw a rough sketch of the structure

  • First, determine the total number of valence electrons
Periodic table

In the periodic table, tellurium lies in group 16, and fluorine lies in group 17.

Hence, tellurium has six valence electrons and fluorine has seven valence electrons.

Since TeF4 has one tellurium atom and four fluorine atoms, so…

Valence electrons of one tellurium atom = 6 × 1 = 6
Valence electrons of four fluorine atoms = 7 × 4 = 28

And the total valence electrons = 6 + 28 = 34

  • Second, find the total electron pairs

We have a total of 34 valence electrons. And when we divide this value by two, we get the value of total electron pairs.

Total electron pairs = total valence electrons ÷ 2

So the total electron pairs = 34 ÷ 2 = 17

  • Third, determine the central atom

We have to place the least electronegative atom at the center.

Since tellurium is less electronegative than fluorine, assume that the central atom is tellurium.

Therefore, place tellurium in the center and fluorines on either side.

  • And finally, draw the rough sketch
TeF4 Lewis Structure (Step 1)
Rough sketch of TeF4 Lewis structure

#2 Next, indicate lone pairs on the atoms

Here, we have a total of 17 electron pairs. And four Te — F bonds are already marked. So we have to only mark the remaining thirteen electron pairs as lone pairs on the sketch.

Also remember that tellurium is a period 5 element, so it can keep more than 8 electrons in its last shell. And fluorine is a period 2 element, so it can not keep more than 8 electrons in its last shell.

Always start to mark the lone pairs from outside atoms. Here, the outside atoms are fluorines.

So for each fluorine, there are three lone pairs, and for tellurium, there is one lone pair.

Mark the lone pairs on the sketch as follows:

TeF4 Lewis Structure (Step 2)
Lone pairs marked, and got the stable Lewis structure of TeF4

#3 Indicate formal charges on the atoms, if necessary

Use the following formula to calculate the formal charges on atoms:

Formal charge = valence electrons – nonbonding electrons – ½ bonding electrons

For tellurium atom, formal charge = 6 – 2 – ½ (8) = 0

For each fluorine atom, formal charge = 7 – 6 – ½ (2) = 0

Here, both tellurium and fluorine atoms do not have charges, so no need to mark the charges.

In the above structure, you can see that the central atom (tellurium) forms an octet. And the outside atoms (fluorines) also form an octet. Hence, the octet rule is satisfied.

Therefore, this structure is the stable Lewis structure of TeF4.

Next: ClF Lewis structure

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