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The Moleculer Formula (MF) and the Empirical Formula

MF shows the actual number and type of atoms in a molecule. It can be the same empirical formula or some simple multiple of it. Mathematically, MF = (EF) n, where (n) is an integer. For example, a CO2 molecule consists of one carbon atom and two oxygen atoms. The formula (CO2) is the molecular formula of carbon dioxide. It represents the actual composition of a compound molecule.

The molecular formula may be the same as the empirical formula as in the case of CO2 or some simple multiple of EF. Thus, the glucose molecule that represents the glucose molecule consists of (6) carbon, (12) hydrogen and (6) oxygen atoms and its simplest atomic number is EF (CH2O). Therefore, the molecular formula of glucose is (C6H12O6) with (CH2O) or six times the empirical formula (CH2O).

So the molecular formula of glucose is six times EF, which is given by MF= (E. F)n where (n) is a whole number, and n=6 in glucose.

math,

n= MFweight

weight EF

For many molecules, MF and EF are the same, some examples are formaldehyde (CH2O), ammonia (NH3) and methane (CH4).

A formula that gives only the relative number of each type of atom present in a molecule. In other words, the empirical formula does not necessarily give the exact number of atoms in a molecule. For example, the molecular formula of benzene is C6H6. This formula states that the benzene molecule consists of (6) carbon atoms and (6) hydrogen atoms. The ratio of carbon (C) to hydrogen atoms (H) in this molecule is 6:6 or 1:1. The empirical formula of benzene is therefore written as (CH).

So the empirical formula tells us which elements are present and the ratio of the simplest atoms, but not necessarily the actual number of atoms present in the molecule.

Another example is the glucose molecule (C6H12O6) in which the ratio of C, H and O atoms is 6:12:6 or 1:2:1, so the formula is glucose (CH2O).

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