The shape of a 3p orbital resembles_________


The shape of a 3p orbital resembles dumbbell-shape.

There are four different types of orbitals, each with a different shape, denoted by the letters s, p, d, and f.  An s-orbital is spherical with the nucleus at its centre, a p-orbitals is dumbbell-shaped and four of the five d orbitals are cloverleaf shaped.

Shape of p Orbitals

  • Each p orbital consists of two sections better known as lobes which lie on either side of the plane passing through the nucleus.
  • The three p orbitals differ in the way the lobes are oriented whereas they are identical in terms of size shape and energy.
  • As the lobes lie along one of the x, y or z-axis, these three orbitals are given the designations 2px, 2py, and 2pz. Thus, we can say that there are three p orbitals whose axes are mutually perpendicular.
  • Similar to s orbitals, size, and energy of p orbitals increases with an increase in the principal quantum number (4p > 3p > 2p).

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