Do you want to know the 7 Diatomic elements and their formulas?
Or are you studying for a chemistry test and looking for an easy mnemonic to recall the 7 diatomic elements?
Diatomic elements are compounds that contains two elements bound together. However, monoatomic elements are different.
In this article, I will be explaining all about Diatomic molecules, their formulas, differences between them and monoatomic elements, and also easy mnemonic you can use to remember them easily!
If you’re ready for this learning experience, then let’s get to it immediately!
What are Diatomic Elements or Molecules?
What comes to your mind when you hear Di-? It means two right? Exactly!
From the concepts, it’s easy to denote the meaning. The 7 Diatomic molecules are elements having 2 atoms, which may be the same or distinct.
The prefix di-, a Greek word means “two.” There are two terms for classifying Diatomic molecules. It is homonuclear when the atoms in the molecule are the same. Examples are Nitrogen (N2) or Bromine (Br2).
Otherwise, if a diatomic molecule, such as carbon monoxide (CO) or nitric oxide (NO), has two distinct atoms, the molecule is said to be heteronuclear. In a homonuclear diatomic molecule, the bond is non-polar.
The periodic table of elements illustrating the elements that occur as homonuclear diatomic molecules under ordinary laboratory conditions.
At standard temperature and pressure (STP) (or normal laboratory settings of 1 bar and 25 °C), the only chemical elements that form stable homonuclear diatomic molecules are hydrogen (H2), nitrogen (N2), oxygen (O2), fluorine (F2), and chlorine (Cl) (Cl2).
What Is The Definition Of A Diatomic Element?
At standard temperature and pressure, the noble gases (helium, neon, argon, krypton, xenon, and radon) are likewise gases, but they are monatomic in nature.
To distinguish them from other gases that are chemical compounds, the homonuclear diatomic gases and noble gases are collectively referred to as “elemental gases” or “molecular gases.”
Bromine (Br2) and iodine (I2) similarly produce diatomic gases at slightly higher temperatures. Except for astatine, which is unknown, all halogens have been seen as diatomic molecules.
History of Diatomic Molecules
Diatomic elements were crucial in the 19th century clarification of the notions of element, atom, and molecule, as some of the most abundant elements, such as hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen, exist as diatomic molecules.
John Dalton’s initial atomic theory believed that all elements were monatomic and that the atoms in compounds had the simplest atomic ratios relative to one another.
For example, Dalton thought that water had the formula HO, giving oxygen an atomic weight eight times that of hydrogen, rather than the current value of around 16. As a result, for over half a century, there was uncertainty concerning atomic weights and molecular formulae.
Gay-Lussac and von Humboldt demonstrated in 1805 that water is composed of two volumes of hydrogen and one volume of oxygen, and Amedeo Avogadro established the correct interpretation of water’s composition in 1811 using his law.
However, these findings were largely ignored until 1860, partly because it was believed that atoms of one element would have no chemical attraction for atoms of another element, and partly because apparent deviations to Avogadro’s rule were not explained until later in terms of dissociating molecules.
Cannizzaro revived Avogadro’s theories and utilized them to create a consistent table of atomic weights that generally agrees with contemporary values at the 1860 Karlsruhe Congress on atomic weights.
These weights were a necessary condition for Dmitri Mendeleev and Lothar Meyer to develop the periodic rule.
The 7 Diatomic Elements List and their formulas
Now you’ve known what diatomic molecules mean, here are the 7 diatomic elements and their formulas:
This is the first element in the periodic table having just one electron and proton. It’s a diatomic element because it cannot exist in its monoatomic form (H) but only when it combines with another friend (atom of Hydrogen) before forming H2 gas.
The Hydrogen gas now serve as a very important source of energy and fuels for different activities. Also, It’s majorly for rockets fuels.
Nitrogen has electrons in its Lewis structure, cannot also exist in its monoatomic state and is one of the 7 diatomic elements. It therefore, requires bonding with another Nitrogen friend to become dinitrogen gas (N2).
This Nitrogen gas specialty is in food preservative as it can prevent oxidation. Additionally, nitrogen gas is useful in creating ban inert environment.
It is also useful in preserving foods and in the electronics sector when transistors and diodes are manufactured. Nitrogen is used in large amounts to anneal stainless steel and other steel mill products.
3. Oxygen (O2)
Two atoms of Oxygen must bond together before achievement of the Oxygen gas. Singly, it has two valence electrons and would join its friend to produce the gas that we breathe in.
Like you know, Oxygen is very important for man; it’s the primary gas we need to nourish and give nutrients to cells and tissues of the body. Plants also use Oxygen gas to produce food through photosynthesis.
4. Fluorine- one of the 7 diatomic gases
Fluorine element has 9 electrons in its shell and 7 valence electrons. It will combine with another fluorine atom to form Fluorine molecule.
It’s super important as glass etching solution and also in the toothpaste we all use to brush our teeth.
Furthermore, fluorine is super reactive and hence explosive (it’s the most reactive halogen) and as such, is helpful in rocket fuels just like hydrogen gas.
5. Chlorine (Cl2)
Chlorine which is one of the halogens, has 17 number of electrons and 7 valence electrons remaining one to complete its shell.
However, for the Chlorine atom to be complete, it requires another atom (its friend), for pairing. They both share electrons till they have full electrons in the outermost shell. Hence, Chlorine is diatomic.
Chlorine molecule is of great importance in the body to regulate body fluids, acid-base balance, and tonicity.
It’s also very helpful in manufacturing antiseptics and treating drinking water. In industries, they play roles in producing plastics, textiles, paints, and so on.
6. Iodine (I2)
Iodine element has atomic number of 53, and same number of electrons. It also has 7 valence electrons and requires one to complete its shell.
Just like Chlorine, Iodine will bond with another atom, to form Iodine molecule which is one of the 7 diatomic elements.
What about the importance of Iodine? It’s super important in different fields most especially in the body!
When one fails to take iodine-containing foods, Goitre may result. So Iodine is important as an essential nutrient for promoting Thyroid development.
It’s also useful as a disinfectant, water purifier, treating Thyroid cancer and so on.
7. Bromine- One of the 7 diatomic elements
Bromine which is one of the 7 diatomic elements has atomic number 35 in the periodic table. It’s also one of the diatomic halogens having 7 valence electrons.
It cannot exist as an atom and thus requires bond formation with another Bromine atom before attaining stability. Hence, Bromine is diatomic in nature.
It’s useful as an oxidizing agent. One prominent use of Bromine is to retard flames during accidents and protect lives and properties. Asides that, it’s good for preventing pests infestations and lots more.
7 Diatomic Elements Mnemonic and Easy Ways to Remember Them
Do you want to know the diatomic element acronym to remember them easily? Here are mnemonics you can try out:
Where H- Hydrogen, N- Nitrogen, F- Fluorine, O- Oxygen, C- Chlorine, and B- Bromine.
Conclusion on the 7 Diatomic elements and their mnemonic
In this article on Lacylearning, we have discussed the seven diatomic elements and their formulas.
\We started first with definition of diatomic molecules, and its difference between monoatomic ones.
We then dived into the 7 diatomic elements and easy mnemonic to easily remember them. We hope you have learned a lot today!