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Structured questions

Unit 9 Properties of substances

1. This question is about the properties of ions and ionic compounds.

(a) Solid calcium carbonate, CaCO3, has a giant ionic structure.
(i) Draw a diagram for a calcium ion. Show ALL the electrons and the charge on the ion.

(ii) Explain why ionic compounds have relatively high melting points.

(b) Changes in the concentration of ions in a solution can be estimated by measuring the electrical
conductivity of the solution.
(i) Explain why solutions of ions are able to conduct electricity.

(ii) Suggest why aqueous solutions of calcium chloride, CaCl 2(aq), and barium chloride,
BaCl2(aq), of the same concentration, havedifferent electrical conductivities.

2. Soda-lime glass is made by heating, to above 1 500 C, a mixture of soda (sodium carbonate),
limestone and sand.
(a) (i) Suggest a test to show that soda contains sodium. State your expected observation.

(ii) Explain why sodium carbonate is soluble in water.

(b) (i) Name the main chemical constituent of limestone.

(ii) Limestone breaks down when heated to above 1 500 C. Write a chemical equation for the
reaction involved.

(c) (i) Sand is an impure form of quartz. Draw a three dimensional structure of quartz.

(ii) Explain why quartz is stable in moist air.

3. Silicon carbide, SiC, is used in cutting tools.

Look at the diagram. It shows the structure of silicon carbide.

Silicon carbide and diamond have similar structures.

(a) Suggest why silicon carbide has a high melting point. Use ideas about the structure of silicon

(b) One reason for silicon carbide being used in cutting tools is that it has a high melting point.
Suggest one other reason why silicon carbide is used in cutting tools.

4. (a) Use your knowledge of the bonding in graphite and the diagram of the structure to help you to
explain, as fully as you can:
(i) why graphene is strong; and

(ii) why graphene conducts electricity.

(b) Suggest why a sheet of graphite which has a large number of carbon layers would not be suitable
for the touchscreen.

5. (a) (i) Draw an electron diagram to show the arrangement of the electrons in a molecule of
ammonia, NH3. Show outermost shell electrons only.

(ii) Give the name of the type of bond between nitrogen and hydrogen atoms in an ammonia

(b) Ammonia has a simple molecular structure. It is a gas at room temperature. The boiling point of
liquid ammonia is 34 C.
Explain why liquid ammonia has a low boilin point.

6. Calcium fluoride is an ionic compound. It can be made by reacting calcium with fluorine.
(a) Calcium fluoride consists of calcium ions, Ca 2+, and fluoride ions, F.
(i) Explain how a calcium atom, Ca, forms a calcium ion, Ca 2+.

(ii) Write the chemical formula of calcium fluoride.

(b) Explain why calcium fluoride has a high melting point.

(c) When molten calcium fluoride is electrolyzed, fluorine gas is formed at the positive electrode.
Name the element formed at the negative electrode.

7. Both carbon and silicon are Group IV elements in the periodic table. The diagrams
below show the structures of dry ice (solid carbon dioxide) and quartz (a form of silicon
(a) Explain why carbon dioxide is a gas at room temperature and pressure, whereas
silicon dioxide is a solid with a very high melting temperature.

(b) The structure of silicon is similar to that of diamond.

(i) Draw the three-dimensional structure of silicon.

(ii) Explain whether or not you would expect silicon to have a high melting point.

(c) Draw an electron diagram of silicon tetrachloride, showing electrons in the

outermost shells only.

8. Iodine and graphite are both solids. When iodine is heated gently, a purple vapour is
seen. Graphite will not melt until the temperature reaches 4 000 K. Graphite conducts
electricity but iodine is a very poor conductor of electricity.
(a) State the type of crystal structure for each of iodine and graphite.

(b) Describe the structure of and bonding in graphite and explain why the melting point
of graphite is very high.

(c) Explain why iodine vaporizes when heated gently.

(d) State why iodine is a very poor conductor of electricity.

9. Explain why iodine is slightly soluble in water but very soluble in non-aqueous solvents.

10. Explain each of the following.

(a) Sodium metal conducts electricity in both the solid and molten states whereas sodium chloride
only conducts when molten.
(b) Many covalent compounds are gases or liquids whereas ionic compounds are solids at room

11. The diagram represents the structure of a metal.

Use the diagram to help you explain

a) why a metal conducts electricity; and

b) why a metal is malleable.

12. This question is about elements in Period 2 of the periodic table.

(a) Lithium has a giant metallic structure and a boiling point of 1 342 C. Describe, with the aid of a
labelled diagram, the structure and bonding in lithium and explain why lithium has a high
boiling point.

(b) Fluorine is a gas at room temperature and has a very low boiling point of 188 C.
(i) Draw an electron diagram to show the bonding in a fluorine molecule. Show outermost shell
electrons only.

(ii) Explain why fluorine has a low boiling point.

(c) Fluorine reacts with lithium at room temperature to form a white crystalline solid, lithium
fluoride. Lithium fluoride is a good conductor of electricity when molten but NOT when solid.
(i) Draw an electron diagram to show the bonding in lithium fluoride. Show the outermost shell
electrons only.

(ii) Explain why lithium fluoride conducts electricity when molten but NOT when solid.

13. Consider the substances listed below:

argon, hydrogen chloride, magnesium oxide, oxygen, silicon dioxide, sulphur dioxide
Diagrams (i), (ii), (iii) and (iv) below show the arrangements of particles, which can be atoms, ions
or molecules, in some substances.

(a) For each diagram, choose ONE substance from the above list, which has the arrangement of
particles as shown under room temperature and pressure.

(b) Describe the chemical bond and / or attractive forces existing in each substance suggested in (a).