What is the empirical formula of a compound containing 83% potassium and 17% oxygen?
The following method serves for every compound:
In each 100 g of the compound you have 83 g of potassium and 17 g of oxygen.
To determine the empiriacal formula you have to pass these masses into mols
Now divide all the numbers by the smallest you have obatined:
So it is
At this stage you can have numbers that are not integer. In this case you would have to multiply the resulsts by an integer in a way the final result is a proportion of integers:
Imagine you had obtained 1.5 K for 1 O. You just had to multiply by 2 to get the integer proportion of 3:1.