Van der Waals radius



van der Waals radii are established from contact distances between non-bonding atoms in touching molecules or atoms.

image showing Van der Waals radius: group 10 periodic periodicity for group 10 chemical elements


Van der Waals radii may be established from neighbour-neighbour interactions in crystals and from gas critical volumes. Values from tables in different sources differ. Those quoted in WebElements are taken from reference 1 while other marginally different compilations are located in references 2-5. Users of the Chemical Database Service (CDS) at Daresbury who make use of the Cambridge Structural Database System will also find these values reproduced in the "Getting Started" user manual.

Literature sources

  1. A. Bondi, J. Phys. Chem., 1964, 68, 441.
  2. L. Pauling, The Nature of the Chemical Bond, Cornell University Press, USA, 1945.
  3. J.E. Huheey, E.A. Keiter, and R.L. Keiter in Inorganic Chemistry : Principles of Structure and Reactivity, 4th edition, HarperCollins, New York, USA, 1993.W.W. Porterfield in Inorganic chemistry, a unified approach, Addison Wesley Publishing Co., Reading Massachusetts, USA, 1984.
  4. A.M. James and M.P. Lord in Macmillan's Chemical and Physical Data, Macmillan, London, UK, 1992.

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