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Formula mass is applicable in the case of ionic compounds.------plz illustrate this...

Asked by Aadarsh Namboothiri 21st October 2013, 8:18 PM
Answered by Expert

The formula unit mass of a substance is a sum of the atomic masses of all atoms in a formula unit of a compound

Both molecular mass and formula mass signify the same thing.

Formula unit mass is the term used for mass of ionic compounds.  Similarly, molecular mass is used for mass of covalent compounds (molecules).

The only reason we use two different terms is because molecules are covalent compounds meaning they have only non-metals. So ionic compounds cannot be a molecule and therefore it would not make sense to find the molecular mass for an ionic compound, so we just call it the "formula mass", when we are talking about ionic compounds.

Molecular mass: For covalent compounds, compounds that contain only non-metals such as SO2, CO2 etc.

Formula mass: For ionic compound, compounds that contain metals and non-metals such as Na2CO3, K2CO3 etc.

Answered by Expert 23rd October 2013, 11:29 AM
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