What’s your favorite flavor of mercury acetate..on Wikipedia here? on CAS Common Chemistry here or on ChemSpider here?

How would you represent this structure if you were to draw it as a 2D diagram?

mercury acetate

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10 Responses to “How would you draw Mercury (II) Acetate”

  1. Tophe says:

    Assuming the bond angle at the mercury atom (-O-Hg-O-) is ~180°, I’d go with the Wikipedia version.

  2. Stuart says:

    Top one if you like covalent mercury–oxygen bonds; bottom one if you prefer ionic. The middle one just seems a bit silly and has too many hydrogens…

  3. David Sharpe says:

    My own personal preference would be for Wikipedia style structure (perhaps with the oxidation state of the metal shown), the ChemSpider representation is the next best. While I wouldn’t describe the CAS representation as unclear, I find it much less obvious at a glance.

  4. Antony Williams says:

    Stuart….what do you prefer…covalent or ionic? yes, CAS’s common chemistry is just a couple of H’s heavy

  5. Stuart says:

    That’s a good question… what do you get when you dissolve mercuric acetate in water? Do you get ions or do you get Hg(OAc)2 molecules? Mercury is a funny one, as far as I know it’s got a large soft squidgy electron cloud and does covalent bonding well – so if you’re going to make me come down off the fence, let’s go with covalent.

  6. Markus Sitzmann says:

    I also would say the Wikipedia version is the best for Mercury (II) Acetate.

    From my experience, Mercury (II) Acetate is one of these – unfortunately many, many – examples which you find in many forms in different database – and it is very hard to normalize or correct them to a unique representation – probably because it isn’t clear whether the type of Hg-O bond is ionic or covalent, or the rules are complex, or change from metal to metal or ligand/ion to ligand/ion.

  7. Andrew Sun says:

    Chemical structures are not used to indicate the “true” actual state of being but emphasis of certain idea and concept. That’s why for instance carbon backbones are often drawn with explicit bond bars while carbon-hydrogen bonds are ignored. So there is no universal ‘best’ choice.

    However, obscure or wrong valence is always not allowed. All the three diagrams clearly define the valence of all atoms so they are all okay for me.

  8. tony yuan says:

    From informatics point view, I would like have the first one as input, because it keeps more structure information for the machine to understand…

  9. Kirill Degtyarenko says:

    The top diagram is the correct one for crystalline mercury diacetate. The middle diagram is simply wrong coz it shows uncharged acetic acid. I am not sure if the bottom structure is correct for aqueous solution: mercury diacetate only partially dissociates into acetate anion and (acetyloxy)mercury(1+) (CHEBI:49727).

  10. Barrie Walker says:

    The second diagram (CAS Common Chemistry) is certainly wrong and non preferred. My own preference would be diagram no 3 (ChemSpider), that’s the way I have drawn them for the last 40 years (!) but I could live with the top diagram (Wiki). As I have said before the main thing is to be consistent and do all the metal acetates, propionates, benzoates etc the same !

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