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Water

This is a water molecule. Even though you find complex names on other molecules, everyone calls H2O "water". Water is made up of two hydrogen (H) atoms and one oxygen (O) atom. The formula for water is H2O. The hydrogen atoms have filled orbitals with two electrons and the oxygen atom is filled with eight electrons.

H20
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H20
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H20

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]


Lithium Oxide

Two lithium (Li) atoms can bond with one oxygen (O) atom, making the formula Li2O. Oxygen likes to have two additional electrons to make it happy. Each lithium atom provides one. You can see that the Oxygen atom has eight electrons (6 of its own, and one from each lithium), and the two lithium atoms have two electrons each.

Li2o
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Li2O
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Li2O

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]


Hydrogen Peroxide

Two hydrogen (H) atoms can also bond with two oxygen (O) atoms, making the formula H2O2. That's just one more oxygen than water, but it is a totally different compound. You can see that each of the Oxygen atoms has eight electrons, and the two Hydrogens have two electrons each. See how the electrons are shared?

H2O2
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H2O2
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H2O2

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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