Sulfur trioxide (SO3) is a chemical compound of sulfur and oxygen which has a colorless liquid. It can exist in the form of crystals, ice fibers, or as a gas. The compound name of SO3 is sulfur trioxide.

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When SO3 is exposed to air, it quickly absorbs water and emits white fumes that smell very strongly and it’s dangerous to inhale. Sulfur trioxide (SO3) can react with water to form sulfuric acid.

Are you wondering is SO3 polar or nonpolar? This article will help you to clarify all your confusion about sulfur trioxide (SO3) polarity.

The sulfur trioxide (SO3) is corrosive to tissue and metals, and also, there is a fire risk if they come in contact with wood, cotton, etc.


The chemical formula of sulfur trioxide is SO3.

Is SO3 Polar Or Nonpolar

Explanation 1:

The sulfur trioxide (SO3) is a nonpolar molecule because, in SO3, electrons’ sharing is equal, and the lewis structure of SO3 appears to be an asymmetrical molecule.

Explanation 2:

The sulfur trioxide (SO3) is a nonpolar molecule because the shape of the SO3 is trigonal planar. The central atom in the trigonal planar molecule bonded to the three atoms and has no electron pairs. Therefore the total number of bonds becomes three, forming a bond angle of 120 degrees that cancel the polarity. Therefore SO3 is a nonpolar molecule.

Explanation 3:

The sulfur trioxide (SO3) is a nonpolar molecule because there are three molecules in S-O bonds, with no electron pairs. Also, due to the trigonal planar geometry, the SO3 is a nonpolar molecule.

Explanation 4:

The sulfur trioxide (SO3) is a nonpolar molecule because SO3 has a flat triangle geometry with D3h symmetry. Its net dipole moment is zero, and the moment of any two resultant vectors S-O is equal in its magnitude but opposite in direction to the third S-O moment. That is why sulfur trioxide (SO3) is considered a nonpolar molecule.

With that, it’s also essential to know about the NO2+ , NH4 and NF3 polarity.


Simple is that sulfur trioxide (SO3) is a nonpolar molecule. I have mentioned above why SO3 is nonpolar.

Molecular shape of SO3

The molecular geometry of SO3 is a trigonal planar with asymmetric charge distribution around the central atom. The bond angle of sulfur trioxide (SO3) is 120o.

You can see that all three S=O bonds are nearly double bonds in the above picture and all have the same length.

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According to the VSEPR theory, you need to use the sigma bonds to establish the geometry. The three bonding pairs and no lone pairs on the central atom is equal to the trigonal planar.