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Answered 2012-02-26 09:28:32

A chemical formula is the number of atoms in a substance, and is the same as a molecular formula (provided the substance is a molecule - if not, it has no molecular formula). A structural formula shows how the atoms are linked, and there are different interpretations of this:

eg C3H8O2 is the chemical formula of 1,2 propan di-ol, which is the same as the chemical formula of 1,1 propan di-ol

the structural formula however is CH2OHCHOHCH3 for 1,2 propan di-ol and CH(OH)2CH2CH3 for 1,1 propan di-ol. A displayed formula shows all the bonds:






1,2 propan di-ol........1,1 propan di-ol


Some chemicals, such as table salt, have no molecule. Thus, they only have chemical formula but not molecular formula. The chemical formula of table salt is NaCl. There are other salts, such as Na2SO4, MgSO4, etc. (If you hear people saying "the salt molecule has the formula of NaCl...", believe me, they do not know what they are talking about.)

Some compounds exist as molecules- discrete entities, such as water. This kind of compounds have molecular formula. Water's is H2O.

Structural formula? Never heard of.

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A graphic representation of the molecular structure of a chemical compound is called structural formula. A skeletal formula is basically a shorthand representation of a structural formula showing bonding of molecules through molecular geometry.

Explain the similarities and differences in the information shown in a molecular formula and a structural formula for the same not sure look up def of each.

The first is only a brutto formula, the second give an indication about the molecular structure.

A molecular formula indicates the numbers and kinds of atoms in one molecule of a substance. The structural formula shows how the atoms fit together in the molecule. For example, water has the molecular formula of H2O and the structural formula of H-O-H.

molecular formula actually gives the no of different atoms in a molecule or compound where as the structural formula tells us how the different atoms in a compound are connected to each other

A structural formula represents the molecule graphically, whereas the other does not.

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A molecular formula is a brutto formula.The structural formula contain also a description of the geometry of the compound.

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The chemical formula shows the atoms that make up the molecule, whereas the molecular formula basically states the correct quantity of all the atoms in the molecule.

they are the same compounds with identical molecular formula and structural. The different is the state of them, glycerol in liquid state while glycerin in solid state

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