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# (*) At one time, chemists thought that the for mula of a binary compound was the simplest formula possible. For example, the chemical formula of water was thought to be HO and that of ammonia was thought to be NH. Given that 0.832 grams of oxygen combines with 0.104 grams of hydrogen, calculate the atomic mass of oxygen based upon HO as the for mula for water. Similarly, given that 0.403 grams of nitrogen combines with 0.0864 grams of hydrogen, calculate the atomic mass of nitrogen based upon NH as the formula for ammonia.

Solution

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For this task we have a simple ratio:

${\dfrac{m_ H}{M_H}}={\dfrac{m_O}{M_O}}$

From which we get:

$M_O={\dfrac{M_H{\cdot}m_O}{m_H}}$

$M_O={\dfrac{1.008\text{gmol}^{-1}{\cdot}0.832\text{g}}{0.104\text{g}}}$

$M_O=8.064\text{gmol}^{-1}$

For N we have the same case:

$M_N={\dfrac{M_H{\cdot}m_N}{m_H}}$

$M_N={\dfrac{1.008\text{gmol}^{-1}{\cdot}0.403\text{g}}{0.0864\text{g}}}$

$M_N=4.702\text{gmol}^{-1}$

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