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Carbon Dioxide

This is a carbon dioxide molecule. When you breathe out, you usually breathe out carbon dioxide. With the formula CO2 that means there are two oxygen (O) atoms and one carbon (C) atom. If you look closely at the dot structure, you'll see that they share four electrons each. If a bond shares two electrons that means it is a single bond. If a bond is made up of four electrons it is a double bond. That means that the carbon atom has two double bonds, one with each oxygen atom.

CO2
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CO2
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CO2

What Happens When Elements Combine?

When several elements come together it is called a compound. Compounds can be made up of two atoms or hundreds of atoms. There are even compounds that have the same number of atoms, but have different shapes. Those compounds with different structures are called isomers.

No matter what atoms are in a compound, they all want to be "happy". A happy atom is one with the right number of electrons in the outer orbital (usually eight). That desire to be happy is why some elements only combine with a few other elements. Not all elements can make each other "happy".

To learn more about what makes an atom happy and how it picks other elements to combine with, just click... [Button: To Compound Details]


Cyanogen Chloride

Here's something new! We have three different elements here, carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and chlorine (Cl). That's not special, but the way they combine is! Look at the carbon and the nitrogen, they are sharing six electrons!

When two atoms share two electrons, that's a single bond. If they share four it's a double bond. Well these two are sharing six, that's a triple bond. It's extremely strong and powerful. It would take a lot of work to separate the C and the N!

One more thing! Because the bond between carbon and nitrogen is so strong, scientists call them "cyanogen" instead of carbon-nitrogen. Scientists know that cyanogen is always CN.

CNCl
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CNCl
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CNCl

How Do Scientists Name Compounds?

Don't get confused when you look at the names of some of these compounds. The names may be long, but they all make sense. Scientists came up with a naming system for compounds that is very specific.

You will find that there are usually at least two words in a compound name. The first word describes the first part of the compound. The second word describes the last part of the compound.

Use H2S as an example. The name of the compound is hydrogen sulfide. Hydrogen is for the H2 part of the formula. Sulfur is the second part so scientists say "sulfide". There is SULF, and then they finish the word with IDE. Most compound names end with IDE.

For the real dirt on naming just click... [Button: To Naming Details]


Beryllium Carbide

Two beryllium (Be) atoms are able to bond with one carbon (C) atom to create Be2C. The beryllium atoms let the carbon use their electrons so that the carbon is 'happy'. Each beryllium gives up both of its two extra electrons to the carbon. Take a look and see how all of the electrons are shared.

Be2C
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Be2C
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Be2C

Different Kinds Of Bonds

You should know that even though there are two electrons involved in a bond, those electrons can be shared in different ways. Two types of bonds we will talk about are covalent and ionic (electrovalent) bonds.

Ionic/electrovalent bonds happen when electrons are given up by one atom to another. Covalent bonds happen when electrons are shared by both atoms.

If you want to learn more about bonds try this... Bonding Details



 
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