January 15 2014 brain bender
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January 15, 2014 Brain Bender. What does the prefix “poly” mean? Considering that, what do you think a polyatomic ion is?. Naming Ionic Compounds with Polyatomic Ions. Complex Ionic Compounds. Polyatomic Ions:. “Poly” – many/multiple/more than one

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January 15, 2014 Brain Bender

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January 15, 2014Brain Bender

What does the prefix “poly” mean? Considering that, what do you think a polyatomic ion is?


Naming Ionic Compounds with Polyatomic Ions

Complex Ionic Compounds


Polyatomic Ions:

  • “Poly” – many/multiple/more than one

  • Polyatomic ions – ions that are made up with more than one atom

    Examples: NO3-1SO4-2 MnO4-1 C2H3O2-1

    _These are compounds that act just like an individual element


Complex Ionic Compounds

Any ionic compound that contains three or more elements.

It can ONLY occur if there is a polyatomic ion present in the compound.


This is your list, please do not lose it


Let’s Practice:

  • Identify the compounds with polyatomic ions:

    • Hint: Look for 3 or more different atoms in the compound.


Rules for naming Complex Ionic Compounds:

  • Name the first element directly off the periodic table, IF IT IS A METAL

    *Remember to identify the charge of any transition metal using roman numerals

  • Name the second element, IF IT IS A NONMETAL, by changing the ending to -ide

  • If either of the elements is a polyatomic, name it directly off the polyatomic list, replacing step 1 or 2.

    Na2CO3

    Sodium Carbonate


Naming Complex Ionic Compounds:

  • Name the first element directly off the periodic table, IF IT IS A METAL

    *Remember to identify the charge of any transition metal using roman numerals

  • Name the second element, IF IT IS A NONMETAL, by changing the ending to -ide

  • If either of the elements is a polyatomic, name it directly off the polyatomic list, replacing step 1 or 2.

    NH4Cl

    Ammonium Chloride


Naming Complex Ionic Compounds:

When we need multiple polyatomic ions to create a neutral compound, ( ) are used around the polyatomic ion.

The subscript is placed OUTSIDE of the ( )

The polyatomic ion MUST be treated as ONE atom….it is a unit that CANNOT be separated.

Ca+2 ClO3-1

Ca(ClO3)2

Calcium Chlorate


Let’s Practice:


Rules for writing compound formulas:

Write out the ions for each of the elements/polyatomic present

Write the charge with each ion present

Drop the signs (+/-)

Swap the numbers

Simplify if necessary

Sodium Phosphate

Na+1PO4-3

Na3PO4


Here’s another example:

Write out the ions for each of the elements/polyatomic present

Write the charge with each ion present

Drop the signs (+/-)

Swap the numbers

Simplify if necessary

Aluminum Carbonate

Al+3 CO3-2

Al2(CO3)3


Let’s Practice:


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