Polyatomic ions

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Jane Burgan 1C
Posts: 73
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:15 am

Polyatomic ions

Postby Jane Burgan 1C » Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:18 am

How do you figure out the formulas of polyatomic ions besides memorizing them?

105114680
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:23 am

Re: Polyatomic ions

Postby 105114680 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:49 pm

From my understanding, polyatomic ions are just one of those things you have to memorize. Once you use them enough you will become very familiar with them. I would suggest memorizing them as you come across them, and the more you are asked to use them in problems the easier they will become. Also, pay attention to the endings of the names of the ions such as "ate" vs "ite" because they give insight on the amount of oxygen atoms in the ion and as well as the charges of the ions.

Diana Bibireata 1B
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:23 am

Re: Polyatomic ions

Postby Diana Bibireata 1B » Thu Oct 04, 2018 2:21 pm

In the end you will have to memorize them but there are a few ways that will make memorizing them easier.
1. polyatomic ions ending with -ate have one more oxygen atom than those ending with -ite. (ex. nitrate: NO3- and nitrite: NO2-)
2. ions with per- have one more oxygen atom then those ending with -ate
3. ions with hypo- have one less oxygen that those ending with -ite
4. adding a hydrogen atom to a polyatomic ion reduces the charge by one (ex. phosphate: PO43- and hydrogen phosphate: HPO42-)
Hope this helps! But I would recommend making flashcards or something to help you memorize the polyatomic ions

ariellasarkissian_3H
Posts: 46
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:25 am

Re: Polyatomic ions

Postby ariellasarkissian_3H » Thu Oct 04, 2018 2:22 pm

It might help to look at patterns with suffixes, which will usually determine the number of oxygen atoms in the ion.


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