Sigma holes are described as electron-deficient regions on atoms, particularly along the extension of covalent bonds, due to non-uniform electron density distribution on the surface of these atoms. A computational study of MXnY4-n molecules (n = 1-4; M = C, Si, Ge; X, Y = F, Cl, Br) was undertaken and it is shown that the relative sigma hole potentials on M due to X-M and Y-M can be adequately explained in terms of the variation in the valence electron population of the central M atom. A model is proposed for the depletion of the M valence electron population which explains the trends in sigma hole strengths, especially those that cannot be accounted for solely on the basis of relative electronegativities.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Physics and Astronomy
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry