A triple bond, also known as triple covalent bond, is a chemical bond wherein three pairs of electrons are shared between two bonding atoms. In other words, three electrons are shared by each atom during this chemical reaction. In a chemical formula, a triple bond is depicted by three parallel lines linking the atoms.

A triple bond comprises a sigma bond and a couple of pi bonds. A sigma bond is basically two atoms overlapping each other head-to-head. A pi bond, on the other hand, entails the atoms’ orbitals overlapping but not head-to-head – it’s side-on. Compared to a pi bond, a sigma bond is always stronger. In a triple bond, the first bond is always the sigma bond.

Bond Strength

Compared to single and double bonds, triple bonds are stronger – meaning, the bonded atoms do not come apart easily. This show of strength can be to a great extent attributed to the sigma and pi bonds in a triple bond. This is why the bond energy required to dissociate atoms in a triple bond is more than the dissociation energy needed for a single bond or double bond.

Nitrogen gas is among the strongest molecules around because it comprises a couple of nitrogen atoms attached to each other courtesy a triple bond. Breaking this bond would need six times the bond energy needed to break nitrogen atoms held together by a single bond.