Theoretically, if you put 2 neutral atoms/compounds together in a controlled space with no external electrical fields, would a temporary dipole last forever, or would the jumping of electrons break the induced dipole?

Generally speaking, how long do temporary dipoles last? Milliseconds? Less? More? In what scenarios would a temporary dipole last for a "long" time and in what scenarios would it last for a short time?

  • $\begingroup$ How long would last disturbance of spherical symmetry of electron probability density of a H atom, if the random electrostatic field disappears ? $\endgroup$
    – Poutnik
    Oct 24 at 8:13
  • $\begingroup$ You're not getting the concept here. While resulting vdW molecule could last indefinitely, these instantaneous dipoles arise and all the time - are basically fluctuations of electron density that happen on extremely short timescale. $\endgroup$
    – Mithoron
    Oct 24 at 17:08