How Are Chemical Formulas Written For Binary Ionic Compounds Chemistry – How to Write Chemical Names

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Chemistry – How to Write Chemical Names

Learning to write chemical names can be a daunting task if you don’t have a system to help keep things organized. The first thing you don’t want to do is memorize a bunch of stuff. Memorization should be kept to a minimum. Instead you want to learn a process that will explain what to do step by step and can be used by anyone.

By the end of this article you will be able to write chemical names using the memorization process. But after you learn the process, it’s up to you to practice and improve your skill. Remember for any skill to improve, you need to practice. Now, let’s look at ways to name compounds.

Trick #1 Know the Periodic Table

You should know the periodic table and how it is structured. All chemical names are based on the names of the elements so you can familiarize yourself with them and keep the periodic table handy.

Strategy #2 Identify Polyatomic Ions

Many chemicals are made of a polyatomic ion and a metal or nonmetal or two polyatomic ions. Therefore, it is useful to have a functional list of common polyatomic ions.

Strategy #3 Know how to determine the Ions of the Elements

It is very useful to know your primary elements and their ions or oxidation numbers. Especially for ionic compounds because their charge must be balanced to zero.

Strategy #4 Know the Metals with High Charges

Most metals, especially the transition metals, have more than one charge, so you will need a list of these metal ions and their names for reference.

Trick #5 Most Chemical Names are Binary

Remember that most chemical names are binary, meaning they contain two parts. These two components can include a cation and an anion; a cation or anion with a polyatomic ion; or two polyatomic ions.

Strategy #6 Know the Root of Common Non-Metals

Most chemical names will use the root of the non-metal and add the suffix “-ide”. Therefore, it is very useful to know the roots of the non-metal.

Trick #7 The most metallic thing to start with

When writing the chemical name i most metals something it goes first and the metal minimum goes second. Remember that the elements to the left of a semi-metal are metals and the elements to the right are non-metals.

Let’s try one. Write the name of BaCl2.

First, find Ba in the periodic table, it is barium. Now find Cl, which is chlorine. Hence, the name barium chloride. There is no need for a numerical prefix because the element is ionic.

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