In chemistry, heterolysis or heterolytic fission (from Greek ἕτερος, heteros, "different," and λύσις, lusis, "loosening") involves cleavage of a chemical bond in a process where both of the electrons involved in the original bond remain with only one of the fragment species. During heterolytic bond cleavage in a neutral molecule, a cation and an anion will be generated. Typically, the more electronegative fragment will retain the pair of electrons.
The energy involved in this process is called heterolytic bond dissociation energy. Bond cleavage is also possible by a process called homolysis. In the gas-phase, heterolysis of a neutral molecule will require additional energy to separate the ion contact pair.
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