Coordination Compounds and their Properties

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Coordination compounds are the chemical compounds that are made up of an array of anions or neutral molecules that are bound to a central atom, which is commonly known as the coordination center. The type of chemical bonding that takes place between the coordination center and the anions/neutral molecules attached to it is coordinate covalent bonding.

The anions/ neutral molecules bound to the central atom in a coordination compound are often referred to as ligands. Generally, the coordination center of a coordination compound is a transition metal (an element with an incompletely filled d orbital).

Many types of ligands can bond with the coordination center in a coordination compound. Some important types of ligands are listed below.
Unidentate Ligands – Ligands that bind to the central metal atom/ion through only one atom are called unidentate ligands.

Bidentate Ligands – these ligands can bind to the coordination center via two different donor atoms.

Polydentate Ligands – some ligands have many atoms that can donate an electron pair to form a metal-ligand bond. These ligands are called polydentate ligands.

Ambidentate Ligands – these ligand molecules can bind to the coordination center via atoms of different elements. A great example of such a ligand is the SCN ion.

Properties of Coordination Compounds

  • The coordination compounds formed by transition metals are colored due to the presence of unpaired electrons that can absorb light of a certain frequency.
  • The coordination compounds comprising of a metallic center are generally magnetic in nature (since they contain unpaired electrons)
  • They exhibit a great variety of chemical reactivity.
  • They can act as catalysts to many chemical reactions.

Thus, the important properties of coordination compounds are briefly discussed in this article. To learn more about the coordinate covalent bond, subscribe to the BYJU’S YouTube Channel and enable notifications.

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