Formulae for Common Chemical Compounds

Chapter 3 - Chemistry in Industrial Instrumentation

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Most of these formulae appear in molecular chemical form rather than structural form. For example, ethanol appears here as C\(_{2}\)H\(_{6}\)O rather than C\(_{2}\)H\(_{5}\)OH. Also, the entries for fructose and glucose are identical (C\(_{6}\)H\(_{12}\)O\(_{6}\)) despite the two compounds having different structures. This means most of the formulae shown in this section merely represent the ratios of each element in a compound, making little or no attempt to convey the structure of the molecule.

It should be noted that this list is definitely not exhaustive, but merely attempts to show formulae for some common compounds.

  • Acetone: C\(_{3}\)H\(_{6}\)O
  • Acetylene: C\(_{2}\)H\(_{2}\)
  • Alcohol, methyl (methanol): CH\(_{4}\)O
  • Alcohol, ethyl (ethanol): C\(_{2}\)H\(_{6}\)O
  • Alcohol, isopropyl (isopropanol): C\(_{3}\)H\(_{8}\)O
  • Alcohol, butyl (butanol): C\(_{4}\)H\(_{10}\)O
  • Alcohol, phenol: C\(_{6}\)H\(_{6}\)O
  • Aluminum oxide (alumina): Al\(_{2}\)O\(_{3}\)
  • Ammonia: NH\(_{3}\)
  • Ammonium carbonate: (NH\(_{4}\))\(_{2}\)CO\(_{3}\)
  • Ammonium chloride (sal ammoniac): NH\(_{4}\)Cl
  • Ammonium nitrate: N\(_{2}\)H\(_{4}\)O\(_{3}\)
  • Aromatic hydrocarbons: Acetylene: C\(_{2}\)H\(_{2}\) Ethylene: C\(_{2}\)H\(_{4}\) Propylene: C\(_{3}\)H\(_{6}\) Butylene: C\(_{4}\)H\(_{8}\) Benzene: C\(_{6}\)H\(_{6}\) Toluene: C\(_{7}\)H\(_{8}\) Styrene: C\(_{8}\)H\(_{8}\) Napthalene: C\(_{10}\)H\(_{8}\)
  • Calcium carbonate (limestone, marble): CaCO\(_{3}\)
  • Calcium chloride: CaCl\(_{2}\)
  • Calcium hydroxide: Ca(OH)\(_{2}\)
  • Calcium oxide (lime or quicklime): CaO
  • Calcium sulfate (gypsum): CaSO\(_{4}\)
  • Carbon monoxide: CO
  • Carbon dioxide: CO\(_{2}\)
  • Carbon tetrachloride: CCl\(_{4}\)
  • Carbonic acid: H\(_{2}\)CO\(_{3}\)
  • Cellulose: (C\(_{6}\)H\(_{10}\)O\(_{5}\))\(_{n}\)
  • Clay (or shale): H\(_{4}\)Al\(_{2}\)Si\(_{2}\)O\(_{9}\)
  • Copper oxide (cuprite): Cu\(_{2}\)O
  • Copper oxide (tenorite): CuO
  • Cyanic acid: HOCN
  • Dextrose (synonym for biological glucose): C\(_{6}\)H\(_{12}\)O\(_{6}\)
  • Ethyl mercaptan: C\(_{2}\)H\(_{6}\)S
  • Ethylene glycol: C\(_{2}\)H\(_{6}\)O\(_{2}\)
  • Ethylene oxide: C\(_{2}\)H\(_{4}\)O
  • Ferrous chloride: FeCl\(_{2}\)
  • Ferric chloride: FeCl\(_{3}\)
  • Formaldehyde: CH\(_{2}\)O
  • Folic acid: C\(_{19}\)H\(_{19}\)N\(_{7}\)O\(_{6}\)
  • Formaldehyde: CH\(_{2}\)O
  • Formic acid: CH\(_{2}\)O\(_{2}\)
  • Fructose (same molecular formula as glucose): C\(_{6}\)H\(_{12}\)O\(_{6}\)
  • Glycerol: C\(_{3}\)H\(_{8}\)O\(_{3}\)
  • Hydrazine: N\(_{2}\)H\(_{4}\)N\(_{}\)
  • Hydrocyanic acid: HCN
  • Hydrofluoric acid: HF
  • Hydrochloric acid: HCl
  • Hydrogen peroxide: H\(_{2}\)O\(_{2}\)
  • Hydrogen sulfide: H\(_{2}\)S
  • Iron oxide: Fe\(_{2}\)O\(_{3}\)
  • Magnesium hydroxide (milk of magnesia): Mg(OH)\(_{2}\)
  • Nitric acid: HNO\(_{3}\)
  • Nitric oxide: NO
  • Nitrogen dioxide: NO\(_{2}\)
  • Nitrogen trioxide: NO\(_{2}\)
  • Nitroglycerine: C\(_{3}\)H\(_{5}\)N\(_{3}\)O\(_{9}\)
  • Nitromethane: CH\(_{3}\)NO\(_{2}\)
  • Nitrous oxide: N\(_{2}\)O
  • Dinitrogen dioxide: N\(_{2}\)O\(_{2}\)
  • Dinitrogen trioxide: N\(_{2}\)O\(_{3}\)
  • Ozone: O\(_{3}\)
  • Paraffinic hydrocarbons: Methane: CH\(_{4}\) Ethane: C\(_{2}\)H\(_{6}\) Propane: C\(_{3}\)H\(_{8}\) Butane: C\(_{4}\)H\(_{10}\) Pentane: C\(_{5}\)H\(_{12}\) Hexane: C\(_{6}\)H\(_{14}\) Heptane: C\(_{7}\)H\(_{16}\) Octane: C\(_{8}\)H\(_{18}\) Nonane: C\(_{9}\)H\(_{20}\) Decane: C\(_{10}\)H\(_{22}\)
  • Phosgene: COCl\(_{2}\)
  • Phosphoric acid: H\(_{3}\)PO\(_{4}\)
  • Potassium chloride: KCl
  • Potassium cyanide: KCN
  • Potassium hydroxide: KOH
  • Potassium sulfate: K\(_{2}\)SO\(_{4}\)
  • Silane: SiH\(_{4}\)
  • Silica: SiO\(_{2}\)
  • Silicon carbide: SiC
  • Sodium chloride (table salt): NaCl
  • Sodium hydroxide: NaOH
  • Sodium fluoride: NaF
  • Strychnine: C\(_{21}\)H\(_{22}\)N\(_{2}\)O\(_{2}\)
  • Sucrose: C\(_{12}\)H\(_{22}\)O\(_{11}\)
  • Sulfuric acid: H\(_{2}\)SO\(_{4}\)
  • Sulfur dioxide: SO\(_{2}\)
  • Sulfur hexafluoride: SF\(_{6}\)
  • Testosterone: C\(_{19}\)H\(_{28}\)O\(_{2}\)
  • Turpentine: C\(_{10}\)H\(_{16}\) (approx.)
  • Zinc sulfate: ZnSO\(_{4}\)