HELP how do i tell whether a polyatomic compound is covalent or ionic?
i know how to tell with 2 elements: covalent is 2 non-metals & ionic is 2 metals. but when they give me 3 element problems im confused.
- Dr WLv 79 months ago
you have to memorize common polyatomic ions
and how they are named
and all of those are covalently bonded ions. if they are bonded to H, they are probably not ionic. If they are bonded to a metal (Na, K, Li, Ca, etc) they are probably ionic compounds.
and you need to think about ionic compounds as breaking into say 2 particles, 1 with multiple atoms.. like this
.. 1 NaClO ---> 1 Na(+) + 1 ClO(-)
.. 1 NaCl ----> 1 Na(+) + 1 Cl(-)
see this pic
that's how potassium bromide exists in a crystal lattice
the purple represents K(+) ions. the brown represents Br(-) ions
now imagine the purple represents Na(+) and the brown represents the ClO(-) ion. thats how NaClO exists. the ClO is like 1 particle
- 9 months ago
Covalent - Two non metals
Ionic - Non metal + metal
Polyatomics - Are they all 3 non metals? Or do they have 2 non metals and 1 metal? 2 metals and 1 non metal?