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: 2.74a



Work Step by Step

Because Sodium is bonded to a Phosphate ion, this is an ionic bond. Thus, the charges of the Phosphate and of the Sodium must cancel out. Sodium, which is an Alkali Metal, has a charge of +1. Phosphate, or ($PO_4)3-$, has a charge of 3-. In order for the charges to cancel out, there must be 3 Sodium ions for every one Phosphate ion. Because the metal always comes first when writing the chemical formula for an ionic bond, the Chemical formula for Sodium Phosphate is $Na_3PO_4$.
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