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Questions tagged [inorganic-chemistry]

Inorganic compounds generally do not have C-H bonds, while organic compounds do have such bonds. The distinction between inorganic and organic chemistry, however, is far from absolute.

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Why do compounds like SF6 and SF4 exist but SH6 and SH4 don't?

Both $\ce{SF6}$ and $\ce{SH6}$ and $\ce{SF4}$ and $\ce{SH4}$ have the same central atom and the same hybridization, but my teacher specifically mentioned that $\ce{SH6}$ and $\ce{SH4}$ don't exist. I'...
196
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3answers
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Why is gold golden?

Bulk gold has a very characteristic warm yellow shine to it, whereas almost all other metals have a grey or silvery color. Where does this come from? I have heard that this property arises from ...
14
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1answer
13k views

Is KF the most ionic compound?

I saw somewhere (can't recall where) that KF is the most ionic compound. I expected CsF. Does the greater polarizability of Cs allow it to more easily form covalent bonds compared to K? Does this ...
13
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2answers
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What is the perfect definition for chirality?

Why is chirality defined differently for organic and inorganic compounds? Why are inorganic compounds deemed to be optically active if they have more than one of the same ligands attached to the ...
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3answers
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Colour intensity of transition metal complexes

Even though they are both $\mathrm{d^7}$ complexes, the colour of $\ce{[Co(H2O)6]^2+}$ is pale whereas that of $\ce{[CoCl4]^2-}$ is more intense. Does the octahedral or tetrahedral geometry matter in ...
39
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3answers
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What is the inert pair effect?

I was reading about the p-block elements and found that the inert pair effect is mentioned everywhere in this topic. However, the book does not explain it very well. So, what is the inert pair effect? ...
20
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2answers
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What is the favoured geometry of chlorine trifluoride?

Why is the first structure on the left more stable than the second one on the right? In the first one the angle between the two pair of nonbonding electrons is about 120° which is a lot less than ...
20
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5answers
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Why does basicity of group 15 hydrides decrease down the group?

In my textbook it is written that the order of basic strength of pnictogen hydrides is $$\ce{NH3 > PH3 > AsH3 > SbH3 > BiH3}$$ I tried but could not find any explanation as to why this ...
18
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1answer
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Why does mercury have low melting and boiling points?

Many metals have relatively high melting and boiling points, but mercury has relatively low melting and boiling points. What are the possible reasons for this?
14
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3answers
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Why is the inversion barrier larger in PH3 than it is in NH3?

The inversion barrier in $\ce{NH3}$ is approximately $5~\mathrm{kcal~mol^{-1}}$ and that of $\ce{PH3}$ is $35~\mathrm{kcal~mol^{-1}}$. This has well-known stereochemical consequences in that amines ...
27
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2answers
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What do the prefixes meta, ortho, pyro mean in inorganic chemistry?

In inorganic chemistry, when is the prefix meta used? (as in metaborate and metasulphite) What about the terms pyro and ortho (as in orthophosphorous acid)? For example, I recently came to know about ...
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2answers
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Why is arsenous acid denoted H3AsO3?

Inspired by this question, I'm wondering why arsenous acid is frequently denoted $\ce{H3AsO3}$, as opposed to $\ce{As(OH)3}$, which would appear to more accurately reflect its connectivity? [edit] I ...
12
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1answer
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What is the definition of organic compounds?

According to the definition of organic compounds on Wikipedia: An organic compound is any member of a large class of gaseous, liquid, or solid chemical compounds whose molecules contain carbon. ...
6
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1answer
15k views

Trend in the melting point down the group

We know that the atomic radii increases down the group. So, less energy is required to pull out the outermost electron as we go down the group, hence, gradually melting point decreases down the group....
12
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3answers
10k views

How does chlorine form more than 1 bond?

How are perchlorate or chlorate or chlorite ions and their respective acids or compounds formed. $\ce{Cl}$ can't form more than one bond but still... $\rightarrow$'Perchlorate ion' $\rightarrow$'...
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6answers
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Why is carbon dioxide nonpolar?

I understand that polarity corresponds to an electronegativity difference and that the larger the electronegativity difference, the more polar the bond. However, I have read that carbon dioxide is ...
21
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1answer
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Why is [PdCl4]2- square planar whereas [NiCl4]2- is tetrahedral?

The molecule $\ce{[PdCl4]^2-}$ is diamagnetic, which indicates a square planar geometry as all eight d electrons are paired in the lower-energy orbitals. However, $\ce{[NiCl4]^2-}$ is also $\mathrm{d^...
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4answers
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Will gaseous ionic compounds be free moving ions?

I knew while learning about electrolysis that if the ionic compound is molten it becomes free moving ions. If that is the case, what will happen if I continued heating till it reaches the boiling ...
14
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1answer
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The bond in coordination complexes

This is a very basic question and I'm surprised it only just struck me. The nature of the bond in coordination complexes is a coordinate covalent bond. Only the ligand donates electrons for bond ...
9
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2answers
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How does copper reduce dilute nitric acid to nitric oxide and concentrated nitric acid to nitrogen dioxide?

Here are the 2 equations: \begin{align} \ce{3Cu + 2NO3- + 8H+ &<=> 3Cu^2+ + 2NO + 4H2O} & E &= 0.62~\mathrm{V}\\ \ce{3Cu + 2NO3- + 4H+ &<=> 3Cu^2+ + 2NO2 + 2H2O}& E &...
8
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1answer
692 views

How does the radial distribution function of Vanadium differ from that of Calcium and how does this affect the ionic electron configurations?

When Vanadium is ionised it loses the 4s electron first, meaning that it's 3+ ion has a different electron configuration to Calcium despite it being isoelectronic. Can it be explained in terms of ...
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4answers
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Why is ligand substitution only partial with copper(II) ions and ammonia?

When studying ligand substitution (at UK year 13 level), the following example has been given: \begin{align} \ce{[Cu(H2O)_6]^2+ + 2NH3 &<=> [Cu(OH)_2(H2O)_6] + 2NH4^+}\\ \ce{[Cu(OH)_2(H2O)...
14
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4answers
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Why is CaCl2 called calcium chloride?

Doing a first year chem class. Just read through the molecular naming of compounds and now I'm confused as to why $\ce{CaCl2}$ is called calcium chloride and not calcium dichloride?
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3answers
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Is KHF2 an ionic compound or a covalent compound?

The statement below is an excerpt from my school textbook:- Because of the tendency of fluorine to form hydrogen bond, metal fluorides are solvated by $\ce{HF}$ giving species of the type $\ce{...
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2answers
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Melting and boiling points of transition elements

The melting and boiling points of transition elements increases from scandium ($1530~\mathrm{^\circ C}$) to vanadium ($1917~\mathrm{^\circ C}$). They increase because as we go across the group, we ...
15
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1answer
607 views

Why do different elements form different types of carbides?

What property of the elements make them form different types of carbides like: $\ce{Be}$ and $\ce{Al}$ - $\ce{Be2C}$ and $\ce{Al4C3}$ (Methanides) contains $\ce{C^4-}$ ion $\ce{Na}$ and $\ce{Ca}$ - $...
17
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2answers
588 views

Do bare protons exist, even transiently, in aqueous solution?

Generally $\ce{H^+}$ ions in water remain in the form of hydronium ions ($\ce{H3O+}$), and not as "free" aqueous protons, as far as I've been taught. My question: is this always the case, even when ...
9
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2answers
2k views

Oxygen and sulfur bonding

Why does oxygen form a double bond in $\ce{O2}$ but sulfur, also from group 16, forms single bonds in $\ce{S8}$?
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2answers
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How to calculate the formal charge of sulfate ion?

I found a site with this formula if you will, Formal Charge = [Number of valence electrons on atom] – [non-bonded electrons + number of bonds] I don't think I am using it correctly in finding the ...
11
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2answers
3k views

Dihedral angle of gaseous and crystalline HOOH

Why does hydrogen peroxide exhibit a dihedral angle of 111.5 degrees in the gaseous state? And a dihedral angle of 90.2 degrees in the crystalline phase? I know that in general, there is likely to ...
9
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2answers
3k views

Why do copper (II) complexes contain so many valence electrons?

Consider tetraaminecopper (II) ion. $\ce{[Cu(NH3)4]^2+}$ or $\ce{[Cu(NH3)4(H2O)2]^2+}$. The copper(II) ion has the electron configuration $\mathrm{[Ar]\ 3d^9}$. How do the 4 electron pairs from the ...
8
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3answers
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Why doesn't copper react with hydrochloric acid while the other metals do?

5) Which one of the following metals does not react with hydrochloric acid? A. zinc B. magnesium C. iron D. copper E. aluminium The right answer must be copper, but why ...
3
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1answer
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Why do sodium halides react so differently with sulfuric acid?

Why do sodium halides react so differently with sulfuric acid? \begin{align} \ce{NaF + H2SO4 &-> NaHSO4 + HF} \tag{1a}\label{NaF}\\ \ce{NaCl + H2SO4 &-> NaHSO4 + HCl} \tag{...
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1answer
643 views

How to determine the strongest oxyacid of chlorine?

Which is the strongest acid here? $\ce{HClO}$ $\ce{HClO2}$ $\ce{HClO3}$ $\ce{HClO4}$ I found this question, didn't really get the first answer, but this one in particular seemed ...
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2answers
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Why is snow white?

I know that this is a rather ambiguous question; but my question is, whenever we take water and freeze it in the freezer, it still tends to stay clear. Since snow is just frozen water, why is it white?...
12
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1answer
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How can I find the symmetry labels of atomic orbitals in a molecule?

What are the symmetry labels for the p and d orbitals of platinum in $\ce{[PtCl4]^2-}$? I understand how to find the point group of a molecule, but am not sure how to use the character table to find ...
15
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1answer
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Why are antibonding molecular orbitals formed?

When two atomic orbitals make one molecular orbital there must be an antibonding orbital also. Why should they make also an antibonding molecular orbital, such as the $2\mathrm b_2$ orbital in the ...
10
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1answer
7k views

Why does magnesium have an exceptionally low melting point?

Why does magnesium have a lower melting point than both calcium and beryllium? It does not seem to fit into the group trend.
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3answers
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Hybridization of sulfur in sulfur dioxide

One of the canonical structures for sulfur dioxide - $\ce{SO2}$ - has sulfur (with a lone electron pair) double bonded to each oxygen atom to form a total of 4 bonds for sulfur - which can be achieved ...
12
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2answers
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Anomalous electronic configurations

Cu has an anomalous electron configuration. $\ce{Cu ~=~ 1s^2~2s^2~2p^6~3s^2~3p^6~4s^1~3d^{10}}$, it does not follow the usual pattern. In this case, the 3d subshell is filled before the 4s, which ...
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2answers
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Why is the boiling point of stibane higher than that of ammonia?

I recently came across the fact that the boiling point of $\ce{SbH3}$ (stibane) is greater than that of $\ce{NH3}$ (ammonia). I was expecting $\ce{NH3}$ to have a greater boiling point as a ...
3
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2answers
7k views

Structure of xenon hexafluoride

The central atom has a hybridization of $\mathrm{sp^3d^3}$. Thus, its structure should be pentagonal bipyramidal. Why is it not that but a distorted octahedron?
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1answer
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Why does ozone have an electrostatic potential map similar to that of SO2?

This is the electrostatic potential for ozone. This is the electrostatic potential for sulfur dioxide. (Click to enlarge) They look almost exactly the same except one is all oxygen atoms and the ...
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2answers
8k views

Reaction intermediates of MnO2 catalyzed H2O2 decomposition reaction

Manganese dioxide catalyzes the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide to water and oxygen gas. But what are the intermediates in this catalyzed reaction?
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6answers
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Do all salts taste salty?

Recently, I am learning the production of soluble and insoluble salts. My friend and I have done this experiment at the school lab. We wanted to taste them to see whether they are salty are not. The ...
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1answer
2k views

How to name binary (inorganic) compounds given their chemical formula, and vice-versa?

I wish to understand how to name binary (inorganic) compounds when given their formula. When I am a given compound like $\ce{B2F2}$ or $\ce{N2O4}$, I have little to no clue on how to write their ...
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3answers
6k views

Why do we write NH3?

We've learnt that the electropositive element is written first. Then why is ammonia written as $\ce{NH3}$ ?
42
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1answer
9k views

Why does sulfur, but not oxygen, catenate?

Oxygen is a rather boring element. It has only two allotropes, dioxygen and ozone. Dioxygen has a double bond, and ozone has a delocalised cloud, giving rise to two "1.5 bonds". On the other hand, ...
49
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6answers
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Is carbon dioxide organic or inorganic?

Today in chemistry class we were discussing Organic Chemistry. We discussed what organic compounds basically are and then I asked the teacher whether $\ce{CO_2}$ is organic or not. She told that it is ...
15
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2answers
655 views

Why is WF6 stable whereas CrF6 is unknown?

$\ce{F-}$ is a hard base since it is small and relatively polarizable. Both $\ce{Cr^6+}$ and $\ce{W^6+}$ are hard acids, but shouldn't $\ce{CrF6}$ be favored since it would be a smaller hard acid?