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2013 Destroyer GC #43


Full Member
5+ Year Member
Aug 12, 2011
    An unknown compound needed to be identified. Studies revealed that it reacted with Oxygen and Fluorine to yield Y2O3 and YF3. Which element listed below could be element Y?

    a) As
    b) C
    c) Mg
    d) Ar
    e) Hg

    Answer is a. Can someone please explain to me why it cant be b?

    Meat Gyver

    Full Member
    7+ Year Member
    Jan 26, 2011
    1. Pre-Dental
      This question just deals with the charges of the ions.

      Long way: Given Y2O3 you know that 2Y + 3O = 0 (neutral compound) Oxygen (as an ion) carries a -2 charge (that is, it will accept 2 e- to get a filled octet). If you plug -2 for oxygen in the equation, the net charge for all 3 oxygens is -6. Seeing that this is a neutral compound you need 2Y to have a +6 charge. So 1 Y ion should carry a +3 charge. If you look on a periodic table, which element has 3 valence electrons it is willing to share to get a filled octet? It can't be Carbon because it has 4 valence electrons, nor can it be Magnesium or Mercury because they only have 2. Ar is a noble gas, which has 8 valence electrons.

      Fast way: F- has a -1 charge, and if 3 F- (-3 charge in total) = 1 Y then Y is +3. So which of these can share 3 electrons and get a filled octet in the process? As
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