How do you determine if a molecule is linear?

Molecular shapes can be predicted using Lewis diagrams and the VSEPR theory. Molecules that consist of three atoms (ie; AX2) may be linear or bent. BeF2 do have lone pairs of electrons on the fluorines, 6 electrons each to be exact. This compound is still linear because the equal amount of lone pairs will repel each other. Linear molecular geometry would be empirically based upon an AX2 molecular formula with ‘A’ being the central element and X’s the attached substrates. The AXn is most commonly used general formula. Molecules with an linear electron pair geometries have sp hybridization at the central atom. For example, CO 2 is a linear molecule

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