Chemistry: The Central Science (13th Edition)

Published by Prentice Hall
ISBN 10: 0321910419
ISBN 13: 978-0-32191-041-7

Chapter 2 - Atoms, Molecules, and Ions - Exercises - Page 77: 2.73f



Work Step by Step

Iron(III) has a charge of 3+, as indicated by the "(III)." On the other hand, carbonate has a chemical formula of $(CO_3)_2-$, meaning that it has a charge of 2-. The magnitude of the charge of iron is 1.5 times as great as that of carbonate, meaning that there has to be 1.5 iron atoms for every one carbonate ion. However, we cannot have only half of an atom, so we multiply each side by two in order to create a whole number of atoms. Thus, there are 3 iron (III) ions for every one carbonate ion. This means that the chemical formula for Iron (III) Carbonate is $Fe_2(CO_3)_3$.
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