Common Polyatomic Ions List

What is a Polyatomic Ion?

A polyatomic ion, sometimes called a molecular ion, is an ion made up of two or more atoms. Most polyatomic ions are anions (ions with an negative net charge) that contain oxygen. These are known as oxyanions.

Below is a list of some common polyatomic ions. Note that many of them are oxyanions. If you're a chemistry student, you may be required to memorize some (or all) of these polyatomic ions. Luckily, for many of the following polyatomic ions, there is a relationship between the ion name and its elements. For example, hydroxide, as its name suggests, contains both hydrogen and oxygen.

(The following list of polyatomic ions is categorized by their net charge. Within each category, the ions are sorted alphabetically by name.)

Vanadyl sulfate (VOSO4), contains the sulfate polyatomic ion as well as vanadium and an additional oxygen atom.
Vanadyl sulfate (VOSO4), contains the sulfate polyatomic ion as well as vanadium and an additional oxygen atom. | Source

Polyatomic Ions with a +1 Charge

Ammonium NH4+

Polyatomic Ions with a -1 Charge

Acetate - C2H3O2-
Bicarbonate (hydrogen carbonate) - HCO3-
Bisulfate (hydrogen sulfate) - HSO4-
Bisulfite (hydrogen sulfite) - HSO3-
Chlorate - ClO3-
Chlorite - ClO2-
Cyanide - CN-
Dihydrogen phosphate - H2PO4-
Hydroxide - OH-
Hypochlorite - ClO-
Nitrate - NO3-
Nitrite - NO2-
Perchlorate - ClO4-
Permanganate - MnO4-

Polyatomic Ions with a -2 Charge

Carbonate - CO32-
Chromate - CrO42-
Dichromate - Cr2O72-
Hydrogen phosphate - HPO42-
Peroxide - O22-
Sulfate - SO42-
Sulfite - SO32-

Polyatomic Ions with a -3 Charge

Phosphate - PO43-

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Comments 2 comments

melbel profile image

melbel 3 years ago from New Buffalo, Michigan Author

Nom nom nom! I'm sure, Kelly! Haha, you always crack me up!


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 3 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Well I Must say - those little particles are gorgeous:) lol

I hope to use them in a recipe soon! Haha

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