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Small chemistry question
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Posted 2008-01-11, 04:00 PM
Okay for anyone who knows anything about chemistry, can you please explain this to me?

The molecule HCO3- is called "Bicarbonate"

But that doesn't make sense to me.. If Bi means 2, I don't see 2 of any element in that molecule. There is 3 Oxygen atoms, but that would result in a "tri" prefix not bi.

Can someone explain this to me please?

gracias.
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Posted 2008-01-11, 05:49 PM in reply to -Spector-'s post "Small chemistry question"
-Spector- said:
Okay for anyone who knows anything about chemistry, can you please explain this to me?

The molecule HCO3- is called "Bicarbonate"

But that doesn't make sense to me.. If Bi means 2, I don't see 2 of any element in that molecule. There is 3 Oxygen atoms, but that would result in a "tri" prefix not bi.

Can someone explain this to me please?

gracias.
CO3 (2-) is a carbonate ion. It's perfectly acceptable to call HCO3 hydrogen carbonate. This is the preferred name by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.

Carbonate is a polyatomic anion. This means that carbonate is a negatively charged molecule. Any stoichiometry needs to be done to the entire molecule rather than the constituent atoms. Whenever you add a hydrogen atom to a polyatomic anion, it is acceptable to add the prefix bi- to the name of the ion. In contrast, generally di- is the prefix used to signify 'two' in chemistry.

Hope that helps.

Last edited by Demosthenes; 2008-01-11 at 08:11 PM.
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Posted 2008-01-11, 08:03 PM in reply to Demosthenes's post starting "CO3 (2-) is a carbonate ion. It's..."
Edited my earlier response...

Might be of more help now.
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Posted 2008-01-14, 01:34 PM in reply to Demosthenes's post starting "Edited my earlier response... Might..."
Alright that makes sense then. My major is Chem/Bio so I know most of the down and dirty stuff, but coming across this molecule was bugging the hell out of me.

Thanks!
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Posted 2008-01-14, 02:37 PM in reply to -Spector-'s post starting "Alright that makes sense then. My major..."
hm..

I might post some of my Chem. homework on here.

Once i get some more.

Passed last semester BARELY with a 61.02. got a 58% on the final. :|

its the hardest class i have
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