MGS Lewis Structure: Drawings, Hybridization, Shape, Charges, Pairs

MgS (magnesium sulfide) is an inorganic compound formed by a reaction between sulfur and magnesium atom. It exists in white crystalline powder with a molar mass of 56.38g/mol and a high melting point of 2000oC.

How to draw MGS lewis structure?

 To draw lewis dots for MgS, one should have to follow a certain set of rules which are given below:

1.Calculate the  valence electrons count for both participating atom

Valence count for Mg = 2

Valence count for S =  6

2.Selection for the central atom based on the electronegative factor does not consider here as there only two atoms are involved.

3.The arrangement of the electrons should be stable, i.e., following the octet rule. 

Before writing down the lewis structure, one should be aware of the octet rule and valence electrons concept.

MGS lewis structure octet rule

According to octet rule, arrangements of electron pairs around all the atoms must be arranged in such a way that each of the participating atom must end up with the stable electronic configuration after the bonds formed between them.

In other words, octet rule gives a idea that all the reactions will occur in the nature only if they attain a stability out of it.

Let’s see the above given MgS lewis structure and observe whether it is following octet rule or not.

As it has been observed after the formation of MgS, Mg now has a fully filled outer configuration as it contributes its two electrons to the sulfur atom during bond formation.

Meanwhile, sulfur also get a stable configuration of 8 electrons. Hence the above structure is fulfilling the octet rule.

MGS lewis structure resonance

Resonance involves the transfer of electrons from one place to another place. Apart from it, intended atoms should have a vacant orbitals in which transfer electron can reside.

In the case of MgS, magnesium does not have any d orbital in its electronic shell arrangement whereas the sulfur do have a vacant d orbital.

However, mg do not have any electrons which can transfer to the sulfur d orbitals and hence resonance structure is not possible for the MgS lewis structure.

MGS lewis structure lone pairs

Lone pairs are those unshared or untouched group of electrons which act as a spectator during the reaction and itself do not involve in the bonding.

As per lewis structure for MgS, there is only one single bond between the magnesium and sulfur and magnesium do not contain any lone pair while sulfur has 6 unshared pair of electrons.

MGS lewis structure formal charge

Formal charge refers to the total charge carry by the molecule. However, MgS is ionic molecule and exist in ions in nature. Therefore, in this case formal charge refer to the charge carried by the individual atoms itself.

It can be seen in MgS lewis structure, +2 charge carried by magnesium atom and -2 by sulfur atom. Hence, total charge is zero as both carry same charge with opposite sign.

MGS hybridization

Hybridization is  intermixing of two individual orbitals of comparable energies to form a new hybridized orbitals. However, in the case of ionic compounds, the concept of hybridization is not so useful. This is because, there is no perfect bond is formed between the ions.

Moreover, in nature ionic compounds exit as ions and instead of forming bond with each other, they closely stayed together. Likewise, MgS is a ionic in nature and do not have a perfect geometry.

MGS lewis structure shape

MgS is an ionic compound and hence rather than having a proper geometry and shape it adopts for crystal lattice arrangement due to its nature of bonding. In the case of MgS has a zinc blend structure as shown in the given picture. Atoms are represented as spherical where yellow color spheres for magnesium atom ad green color is for sulfur.

Zinc blend structure of MgS (Wikipedia)

MGS uses

  1. MgS is world widely  used as semiconductor
  2. MgS  due to its broad-band gap used as photo-detector specially for  uv light of short wavelengths.
  3. It is used for producing steel in a process called BOS (basic oxygen steelmaking).
  4. It is used as lab reagent.

Frequently asked questions

Is MGS ionic or covalent?

MgS is ionic in nature because it is formed by donating two electrons from the magnesium atom to the outer shell of the sulfur atom. In this way  ionic bond is formed between Mg and S. Hence ionic in nature.

What is the difference between covalent and ionic bonding?

 Covalent bonding simply refers to sharing of electrons between the two or more atoms present at the time of bonding and molecule that share covalent bonds are called covalent molecules. For instance, HCl, HBr and CH4

Ionic bonds are formed when one of the atom lose its electrons completely to another atom without sharing any common electrons between them. For example MgS is an ionic compound.

Why MgS is stored in anhydrous conditions?

This is because whenever MgS is come under contact with moisture it form H2S ( hydroge sulfide) gas which cause irritation to human skin on direct contact.

What is the chemical name of MgS?

The chemical name of MgS is Niningerite.

Is MgS soluble in water?

MgS is readily soluble in water.

Give important reactions of MgS.

It reacts with H3PO (phosphoric acid) to form magnesium phosphate and hydrogen sulfide.

             3MgS + 2H3PO4 = Mg3(PO4)2 + 3H2S

Magnesium sulfide reacts with hydrochloric acid to give  magnesium chloride and hydrogen sulfide.

               MgS + 2HCl = MgCl2 + H2S

On reaction with nitric acid it gives magnesium nitrate and hydrogen sulfide.

                  MgS + 2HNO3 = Mg(NO3)+ H2S


 To conclude, we studied about the lewis structure of MgS  and its structural aspects such as hybridization, bond nature, uses and formal charges associated with it.

Pomila Sharma

Hello...Myself is Pomila Sharma. I have done my master's in Chemistry with a specialization in synthetic organic chemistry. I have published 4 research articles. I am very passionate about the chemistry world. I believe it's all about chemistry so let’s explore it together. LinkedIn link:

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