# Valence e- question?

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How many of the valence electrons are used to make σ bonds in the molecule C4H8O2

and how many of the valence electrons are used to make π bonds ?

• Honestly this seems like a trick question. Were you given additional information, such as an actual structure, functional group(s) present in the structure, etc.? I’m asking because you can draw various structures based on this formula. Some that contain only sigma bonds and some that contain sigma and one pi bond. I can tell the total number of valence electrons used to form bonds, but the number of sigma and pi bonds will depend on the actual structure. The total number of valence electrons used in bonding is shown below:

C atoms have 4 valence electrons each

H atoms have 1 valence electron each

O atoms have 6 valence electrons each

Therefore, the total number of valence electrons = 4(4) +8(1) + 2(6) = 36. It could be that 28 of the 36 can be used to make sigma bonds (while the remaining 8 exist as nonbonding/lone-pair electrons on the oxygen atoms), or 26 can be used to make sigma bonds while 2 are used to make a pi bond and the remaining 8 exist as nonbonding/lone-pair electrons on the oxygen atoms.

• How many of the valence electrons are used to make σ bonds in the molecule C4H8O2? 