# I am trying to determine a compound 80.48% carbon (C), 7.37% hydrogen (H), 9.39% nitrogen (N), 2.68% oxygen (O) - what is the empirical formula of the compound?

Jan 19, 2015

The empirical formula is ${C}_{40} {H}_{44} {N}_{4} O$

Start by writing the ratio in grams by which they combine:

C : H : N : O

$\Rightarrow$

80.48 : 7.37 : 9.39 : 2.68

Then convert to moles by dividing by the mass of 1 mole:

$\frac{80.48}{12} : \frac{7.37}{1} : \frac{9.39}{14} : \frac{2.68}{16}$

This gives:

6.70 : 7.37 : 0.67 : 0.1675

if we divide these by 0.1675 we get:

40 : 44 : 4 : 1

So the empirical formula is :

${C}_{40} {H}_{44} {N}_{4} O$