Physical Nature of Hydrogen Bond

  • I. V. Zhyganiuk Institute of Environmental Geochemistry, Nat. Acad. of Sci. of Ukraine
  • M. P. Malomuzh I.I. Mechnikov National University of Odessa
Keywords: hydrogen valence vibrations of a water molecule, frequency shift, hydrogen bond, electrostatic origin


The physical nature and the correct definition of hydrogen bond (H-bond) are considered. The influence of H-bonds on the thermodynamic, kinetic, and spectroscopic properties of water is analyzed. The conventional model of H-bonds as sharply directed and saturated bridges between water molecules is incompatible with the behavior of the specific volume, evaporation heat, and self-diffusion and kinematic shear viscosity coefficients of water. On the other hand, it is shown that the variation of the dipole moment of a water molecule and the frequency shift of valence vibrations of a hydroxyl group can be totally explained in the framework of the electrostatic model of H-bond. At the same time, the temperature dependences of the heat capacity of water in the liquid and vapor states clearly testify to the existence of weak H-bonds. The analysis of a water dimer shows that the contribution of weak H-bonds to its ground state energy is approximately 4–5 times lower in comparison with the energy of electrostatic interaction between water molecules. A conclusion is made that H-bonds have the same nature in all other cases where they occur.


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How to Cite
Zhyganiuk, I., & Malomuzh, M. (2019). Physical Nature of Hydrogen Bond. Ukrainian Journal of Physics, 60(9), 960.
General problems of theoretical physics