In $\ce{AB5E}$-type molecules, why are the lone pairs in axial bonds?

Shape of AB5E

If the lone pair is present in axial bonds it repels four other bonds. On the other hand if the lone pair is in equatorial bonds, it repels only two other bonds.

So what is the reason behind this?

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ There are no axial bonds here. $\endgroup$ Jul 2 '19 at 8:57

Why? Because there is no other choice. Starting from the AB6 octahedral configuration, all six vertices of the octahedron are symmetric, so it doesn't matter whichever one you “choose” to replace by the lone pair. All will yield the same final configuration.


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