inorganic nomenclature

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NOMENCLATURE REQUIREMENTS FOR INTRODUCTORY CHEMISTRY Elements aluminum antimony argon arsenic barium beryllium bismuth boron bromine cadmium calcium carbon cesium chlorine chromium cobalt copper fluorine gallium germanium gold hafnium helium hydrogen Al Sb Ar As Ba Be Bi B Br Cd Ca C Cs Cl Cr Co Cu F Ga Ge Au Hf He H indium In iodine I iridium Ir iron Fe krypton Kr lanthanum La lead Pb lithium Li magnesium Mg manganese Mn mercury Hg molybdenum Mo neon Ne nickel Ni niobium Nb nitrogen N osmium Os oxygen O palladium Pd phosphorus P platinum Pt potassium K radon Rn rhenium Re rubidium ruthenium rhodium scandium selenium silicon silver sodium strontium sulfur technetium tellurium thallium tin titanium tungsten uranium vanadium xenon yttrium zinc zirconium Rb Ru Rh Sc Se Si Ag Na Sr S Tc Te Tl Sn Ti W U V Xe Y Zn Zr

Naturally Occurring Multiatomic Elements bromine chlorine fluorine hydrogen Br2 Cl2 F2 H2 iodine nitrogen oxygen phosphorus I2 N2 O2 P4 sulfur S8

Monoatomic Anions hydride fluoride chloride bromide iodide HFClBrIoxide sulfide nitride phosphide carbide O2S2N3P3C4-

Polyatomic Anions ammonium acetate carbonate hydrogen carbonate perchlorate chlorate chlorite hypochlorite perbromate bromate bromite hypobromite periodate iodate iodite hypoiodite permanganate NH4+ -

nitrate nitrite chromate dichromate cyanide hydrogen sulfate sulfate sulfite hydrogen sulfite hydroxide phosphate hydrogen phosphate dihydrogen phosphate phosphite hydrogen phosphite dihydrogen phosphite-



C2H3O2 CO32-

HCO3 ClO4 ClO3 ClO2 ClO-


CrO4 CN-

Cr2O7 HSO4 SO4 SO3 OH-



BrO4 BrO3 BrO2 BrO IO4 IO3 IO2 IO-










Binary Acids hydrofluoric acid hydrochloric acid hydrobromic acid HF HCl HBr hydroiodic acid hydrosulfuric acid HI H 2S

Oxyacids acetic acid carbonic acid nitric acid nitrous acid perchloric acid chloric acid chlorous acid hypochlorous acid HC2H3O2 H2CO3 HNO3 HNO2 HClO4 HClO3 HClO2 HClO permanganic acid chromic acid phosphoric acid phosphorous acid sulfuric acid sulfurous acid hydrocyanic acid HMnO4 H2CrO4 H3PO4 H3PO3 H2SO4 H2SO3 HCN

Also include all other halogen acids in this list.

Greek Prefixes 1 mono 2 di 3 tri 4 tetra 5 penta 6 hexa 7 hepta 8 octa 9 nona 10 deca

Oxides of the Main Group Elements dinitrogen monoxide nitrogen monoxide dinitrogen trioxide nitrogen dioxide dinitrogen tetraoxide dinitrogen pentoxide N2O NO N2O3 NO2 N2O4 N2O5 sulfur trioxide diphosphorus pentoxide carbon monoxide carbon dioxide silicon dioxide chlorine dioxide SO3 P2O5 CO CO2 SiO2 ClO2

This is only a representation of this type of nomenclature.

Metals with fixed oxidation states aluminum cadmium calcium lithium magnesium potassium silver sodium zinc Al3+ 2+ 2+

Al Cd Ca Li Mg K Ag Na Zn

Cd Ca Li K

+ 2+


Ag Zn

+ +



Metals with variable oxidation states chromium cobalt copper gold iron lead manganese mercury nickel tin uranium Cr2+ 2+ +





Cr(II) Cr(III) Cr(VI) Co(II) Co(III) Cu(I) Cu(II) Au(I) Au(III) Fe(II) Fe(III) Pb(II) Pb(IV)

Co Cu Au Fe Pb

Co Cu Au Fe Pb


2+ 3+


2+ 2+ 2+ 2+

3+ 4+ 3+

Mn Ni U

Mn Ni





Mn(II) Mn(III) Mn(IV) Mn(VII) Hg(I) Hg(II) Ni(II) Ni(III) Sn(II) Sn(IV)

Hg2 Sn



2+ 2+

Sn U4+








Hydrates Use the Greek prefixes when naming hydrates to indicate the number of water molecules associated with each compound. CoSO4 H2O BaI2 2 H2O Au(CN)3 3 H2O FeI2 4 H2O MnSO4 5 H2O Cd(MnO4)2 6 H2O ZnSO4 7 H2O Mg3(PO4)2 8 H2O Al(BrO3)3 9 H2O Pb(C2H3O2)2 10 H2O cobalt(II) sulfate monohydrate barium iodide dihydrate gold(III) cyanide trihydrate iron(II) iodide tetrahydrate manganese(II) sulfate pentahydrate cadmium permanganate hexahydrate zinc sulfate heptahydrate magnesium phosphate octahydrate aluminum bromate nonahydrate lead(II) acetate decahydrate

Chem 127

Dr. Gragson

Chemical NomenclatureNomenclature is essential to our understanding and use of chemistry. Summarized below are the basic rules you should learn for naming chemical compounds. You should also read about this in Chapter 2 of your text. Note that this will NOT be covered in any detail in lecture, so you need to work on this on your own or in groups. YOU MUST LEARN THESE RULES or you will find yourself lost and hurting for the entire term. See me for clarification and assistance.

Naming Ionic Compounds - Ionic compounds are formed between metal and nonmetalIonic compounds are named by first identifying the positive ion (the cation) and then the negative ion (the anion). You should note that the cation is always the metal and the anion the nonmetal. The positive ion takes the same name as its element, the negative ion takes the first part of its element name plus an -ide ending. Thus given the following formulas, we would name the compounds accordingly:

Ca3P2 MgSe Na2O

Calcium phosphide Magnesium selenide Sodium oxide

To write a formula from a given name, you simply take the symbols for the named elements and combine them in a ratio that gives you a neutral ionic compound. That means that the charges must balance, so you have to do a little figuring as to what ions the elements will form and how many of each you'll need to balance out positive and negative charges. The number of each element present is shown as a subscript after the element symbol. Example:

Calcium bromide:

Ca would form a +2 ion, and Br a -1 ion. Thus to have a neutral compound, you need 2 Br for every 1 Ca The formula would be CaBr2

You must know the names and charges of all monatomic ions listed on the separate handout!

Compounds with metals that can form more than one ionSeveral transition metals can form more than one ion. For systematically named compounds for the metals that can form more than one ion, the charge on the metal will be indicated in the given name by a Roman numeral in parentheses. Thus you can easily determine the corresponding formula. For example, iron can form either a +2 or a +3 ion, an example of a compound of the +3 ion is given below:

Iron(III) chloride


If given the formula of such an ionic compound, you'll have to use your memorized knowledge of the cation's charge or use the charge on the anion to determine the charge on the cation, and then write the name. For example:


If you can't remember what ions iron can form, you should at least be able to use the periodic table to determine that O forms a -2 ion, there are 3 O present for a total of a -6 charge, thus we need a +6 charge to balance this, there are two Fe, so each must have a charge of +3. The name for this compound is iron(III) oxide

Chem 127 Dr. Gragson Sometimes you will encounter the common name of compounds that contain metals that can form more than one ion, so you need to be aware of these! An easy way to remember these is that the lowercharged ion will get the -ous suffix, while the higher-charged ion will get the -ic suffix. For example, you should know that iron can form a +2 ion or a +3 ion, the +2 ion will get the -ous suffix and the +3 ion will get the -ic suffix. Thus FeCl3 would commonly be known as ferric chloride and FeCl2 would be commonly known as ferrous chloride. You should be able to name such compounds in this manner given a formula or write a formula for such compounds given a name. We will not focus on the common names, but its good to know them for use in lab and life, so make sure youre aware of them.

Compounds formed from Polyatomic Ions- these are ionic compounds in which one or both of the ions are polyatomic, meaning containing more than one atom.Compounds formed from polyatomic ions are named in the same way as binary ionic compounds: First the cation is identified and then the anion. However, now the ions involved are more complicated, and there is no systematic way of naming polyatomic ions. This is one of the times in chemistry when you just have to memorize. For example:

magnesium sulfate


Mg+2 is the magnesium ion, SO4-2 is sulfate, this is

Oxoanions - Most of the polyatomic ions you need to know are oxoanions, inwhich an element, usually a nonmetal, is bonded to one or more oxygen atoms.There are families of oxoanions in which the nonmetal is bonded to oxygen in several combinations, differing only in number of oxygens. The only naming convention in these families is the following. If there are two oxoanions in the family, the ion with more oxygens takes the nonmetal root name with an -ate suffix, while the ion with fewer oxygens takes the nonmetal root name with an -ite suffix. For example:

Sulfur combines with oxygen to form both SO3-2 and SO4-2. Thus, according to the convention described above, SO3-2 is named sulfite and SO4-2 is named sulfate.If there are four oxoanions in the family, the ion with the most oxygen atoms has the prefix per-, the nonmetal root and the suffix -ate. Ion with one fewer oxygen has just the root and the suffix -ate. Ion with two fewer oxygens has just the root and the suffix -ite. Ion with fewest oxygens has the prefix hypo-, the root, and suffix -ite. For example Cl forms four oxoanions:

ClO4- is pe


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