Asked Aug 30, 2019

Tartaric acid is the white, powdery substance that coats tart candies such as Sour Patch Kids. COmbustion analysis of a 12.01g sample of tartaric aid, which contains carbon, hydrogen and oxygen, produces 14.08g CO2 and 4.32g H2O. Determine the empirical formula of the acid. 


Expert Answer

Step 1

Empirical formula:the simplest positive integer ratio of atoms that is present in a compound is called the empirical formula of that compound.

the empirical formula can be calculated as follows:

Step 2

first find moles of carbon dioxide and then find the mass of carbon as follows:

mass of carbon dioxide=14.01gram

molar mass of carbon dioxide=44.01gram/mol

substitute these values in the above equation (1),

mass of  carbon=0.3183mol×12.011g-mol-1


now find moles of water and then the mass of hydrogen as follows:

mass of water=4.32g

the molar mass of water=18.01g-mol-1

substitute these values in the above equation (2)


Image Transcriptionclose

mass of CO moles of CO2 molar mass of CO, ..(1) 14.01g 2 44.01g/mo moles of CO -0.3183mol mass of water moles of watermolar mass of water"--(2) 4.32g moles of water18.01g/mol 0.2399mol mass of hydrogen=2x0.2399molx1.00794g/mo 0.4835g

Step 3

mass of tartaric acid is given=12.01g

therefore the mass of oxygen can be calculated as

mass of oxygen=massof tartaric acid-(mass of carbon + mass of hydrogen)

mass of oxygen=12.01g-(3.824g + 0.4835g)



Image Transcriptionclose

mass of oxygen moles of oxygen=molar mass of oxygen*-(3) 7.702g moles of oxygen 16.00g/mol 0.4814mol


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