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Definition: formula weight from

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate(R) Dictionary

(ca. 1920) : molecular weight — used esp. of ionic compounds

Summary Article: formula weight from The Columbia Encyclopedia
formula weight, in chemistry, a quantity computed by multiplying the atomic weight (in atomic mass units) of each element in a formula by the number of atoms of that element present in the formula, and then adding all of these products together. For example, the formula weight of water (H2O) is two times the atomic weight of hydrogen plus one times the atomic weight of oxygen. Numerically, this is (2×1.00797)+(1×15.9994)=2.01594+15.9994=18.01534. If the formula used in computing the formula weight is the molecular formula, the formula weight computed is the molecular weight. The percentage by weight of any atom or group of atoms in a compound can be computed by dividing the total weight of the atom (or group of atoms) in the formula by the formula weight and multiplying by 100. For example, the weight percentage of hydrogen in water is de...    Continue Reading
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