List of chemistry mnemonics

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A mnemonic is a memory aid used to improve long term memory and make the process of consolidation easier. Many chemistry aspects, rules, names of compounds, sequences of elements, their reactivity, etc., can be easily and efficiently memorized with the help of mnemonics. This article contains the list of certain mnemonics in chemistry.

Cations and anions[edit]

Cations are positively (+) charged ions while anions are negatively (-) charged. This can be remembered with the help of the following mnemonics.

  • Cats have pawsCations are pawsitive.[1]
  • Ca+ion: The letter t in cation looks like a + (plus) sign.[2]
  • An anion is a negative ion. (AnegativeionAnion).[3]

Redox reactions[edit]

A redox reaction is a chemical reaction in which there is a change in oxidation state of atoms participating in the reaction.

Ions[edit]

An atom (or ion) whose oxidation number increases in a redox reaction is said to be oxidized (and is called a reducing agent). It is accomplished by loss of one or more electrons. The atom whose oxidation number decreases gains (receives) one or more electrons and is said to be reduced. This relation can be remembered by the following mnemonics.

  • Leo says Ger! or Leo the lion, Ger! can be used to represent Loss of electron is oxidation; Gain of electron is reduction.[4][5]
  • Oil Rig: Oxidation is loss; Reduction is gain (of electrons).[6]

Electrodes[edit]

An electrode in which oxidation takes place is called an anode while in that which reduction takes place is called cathode. This applies for both electrolytic and electrochemical cells, though the charge on them reverses. The red cat and an ox mnemonics are useful to remember the same.

  • Red cat: Reduction at cathode
An ox: Anode for oxidation.[7]
  • The words oxidation and anode, both begin with vowels.
Also, both reduction and cathode begin with consonants.[3]

−ate ions[edit]

Sulfate, Phosphate, Carbonate, Chlorate, Bromate, Iodate, Nitrate
  • Super Popeye Constantly Clubbed Brutus In Nevada.[8]
Nitrate, Bromate, Carbonate, Iodate, Chlorate, Chromate, Sulfate, Phosphate
  • Nick Brit the Camel ate an Inky Clam with Crêpes for Supper in Phoenix.

Number of consonants denotes number of oxygens. Number of vowels denotes negative charge quantity. Inclusion of the word "ate" signifies that each ends with the letters a-t-e

Electronegativity[edit]

Fluorine > Oxygen > Clorine > Nitrogen > Bromine > Iodine > Sulphur > Carbon > Hydrogen ≥ Phosphorous
  • Pronounce: FOClNBrISCHP.[9]

FONe CalL Brought to India,Sonias Congress Happy Position

Electrochemical series[edit]

Potassium > Calcium > Sodium > Magnesium > Aluminium > Zinc > Iron > Tin > Lead > Hydrogen > Copper > Silver > Gold
  • Paddy Could Still Marry A Zulu In The Lovely Honolulu Causing Strange Gazes.[10]

Activity series[edit]

K > Na > Mg > Al > Zn > Cr > Fe > Pd > H > Cu > Au
  • Kangaroos Naturally Muck About in Zoos For Purple Hippos Chasing Aardvarks.[11]
  • Katty's Naughty Cat Mingled with Alice and Zarina; Fearlessly Plundering Her Cupboard of Gold.[12]
Potassium > Sodium > Calcium > Magnesium > Aluminum > Zinc > Iron > Lead > Copper > Silver > Gold.

Peter Sells Careless Monkeys And Zebras In Large Cages Securely Guarded

Potassium > Sodium > Calcium > Magnesium > Aluminum > Zinc > Iron > Tin > Lead > Hydrogen > Copper > Mercury > Silver.
  • Popular Scientists Can Make A Zoo In The Low Humid Country More Satisfactorily.[13]
  • Private Second Class MACZITL He Can Make Some Gun Powder

Diatomic molecules[edit]

Molecules exhibiting diatomic structures can be remembered through the following mnemonics.

Hydrogen, Oxygen, Nitrogen, Fluorine, Chlorine, Bromine, Iodine
  • I Have No Bright Or Clever Friends.
  • Have No Fear Of Ice Cold Beer.
  • Help Our Needy Class Find Brains Immediately.
  • Horses Need Oats For Clear Brown Eyes (I's).
  • BrINClHOF: say Brinkelhof.[14]
  • HONClBrIF The name of the imaginary chemistry goose. Say "Honk-Cool-Brief."
  • I Bring Clay For Our New House.[15]
  • Have No Fear Of Cute, Innocent Baby twins.[16]

Hydrogen bonds[edit]

Hydrogen forms hydrogen bonds with three elements which are nitrogen (N), oxygen (O) and fluorine (F). The names of these elements can be remembered by the following mnemonic.

  • Hydrogen is FON! (fun).[3]

Electromagnetic spectrum[edit]

In the order of increasing frequency or decreasing wavelength of electromagnetic waves;

Radio waves, Microwaves, Infrared, Visible light, Ultraviolet, X-Rays, Gamma Rays
  • Ronald McDonald Invented Very Unusual & eXcellent Gherkins.[17]
  • Raging Martians Invaded Venus Using X-ray Guns.

In the order of increasing wavelength;

  • Good Xylophones Use Very Interesting Musical Rhythms.[18] Similarly, Good Xylophonists Use Very Interesting Musical Rhythms.

Organic chemistry[edit]

Nomenclature[edit]

Carboxylic acids[edit]

Common names of homogeneous aliphatic carboxylic acids,

Formic, Acetic, Propionic, Butyric, Valeric, Caproic
  • Frogs Are Polite, Being Very Courteous.[19]

Dicarboxylic acids[edit]

The sequence of dicarboxylic acids can be remembered with following mnemonics.

Oxalic, Malonic, Succinic, Glutaric, Adipic, Pimelic, Suberic, Azelaic, Sebacic
  • Oh My Such, Good Apples.[20]
  • Oh My Stars, Green Apples.
  • Oh My, Such Good Apple Pi.e., Sweet As Sugar.[21][22]
  • Oh My Stars, Go Ahead Please[3]

Aromatic compounds[edit]

m-directing groups[edit]

Quaternary amino Ester Sulfonic acid Nitro Carbonyl Carboxyl Cyano
(-NR3+) (-COOR) (-SO3H) (-NO2) (-CHO) (-COOH) (-CN)
  • Queen Elizabeth Second's Navy Commands, Controls, Communicates.[23]

o,p-directing groups[edit]

Alkyl Halogen Alkoxyl Amino Hydroxyl Amide Phenyl
(R) (X) (OR) (-NH2 -NHR -NR2) (OH) (NHCOR (C6H5)

Note: -NH2,-NHR and NR2 are para directing groups but not -NR3+

Atomic orbital[edit]

Sequence of orbitals[edit]

s p d f g h i k
  • Sober Physicists Don't Find Giraffes Hiding In Kitchens.

Note: After the k shell, they follow alphabetical order (skipping p as it came earlier).[24]

Aufbau principle[edit]

1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d10 ...

The order of sequence of atomic orbitals (according to Madelung rule or Klechkowski rule) can be remembered by the following.

Order in which orbitals are arranged by increasing energy according to the Madelung rule. Each diagonal red arrow corresponds to a different value of n + l.
Another version of the mnemonic

Mohs scale of mineral hardness[edit]

To remember the Mohs hardness of minerals;

Talc (1) < Gypsum (2) < Calcite (3) < Fluorite (4) < Apatite (5) < Orthoclase (6) < Quartz (7) < Topaz (8) < Corundum (9) < Diamond (10)

Tall Gene Calls Florence At Our Quarters To Correct Dumbness.[24]

Periodic table[edit]

Periods[edit]

Periods 1, 2 and 3[edit]

H He Li Be B C N O F Ne Na Mg Al Si P S Cl Ar
  • Little Ben Became Charlie’s Number One Fighting Nemesis.
Native Magpies Always Sit Peacefully Searching Clear Areas.[25]
  • Happy Henry Likes Beer But Could Not Obtain Four Nuts.
Naughty Magpies Always Sing Perfect Songs Clawing Ants.[26]
  • Here He Lies Beneath Bed Clothes, Nothing On, Feeling Nervous.
Naughty Margaret Always Sighs, "Please Stop Clowning Around."[27]
  • Hi Hello Little Beryll Brown Cracking Nuts On Friday .
Nellie's Naughty Magpie Always Sings Pop Songs Clearly
After Killing Cathy.[27]
  • Hi! He Lies Because Boron CanNot Oxidize Fluorine. Necromantic Nato Mg (abbv. for make good)
All Silicon Ports. Superman Clean Argon's K-Capture.[28]
  • Happy Harry Listens B B C Network Over France Nevertheless Nothing More Arose So Peter Stopped Cleaning Airgun K Ca.[29]
  • Harry Helped Little Benny Balmer Carry Neat Oranges From Neptune's Natural Menagerie Always Singing Polite Sonnets Clearly Arf Key Casually.
  • Ha. Healthy Little Beggar Boys Catching Newts Or Fish.[30]
  • Hell, Here Little Beatniks Brandish Countless Number Of Flick kNives.[31]
  • Nagging Maggie Always Sighs, "Please Stop Clowning Around." [27] (adapted)

Period 4[edit]

K (Potassium) Ca Sc Ti V Cr Mn Fe Co Ni Cu Zn Ga Ge As Se Br Kr
  • PoKey Captain Scans Tight Virgin Crew Members Fer Cold Night Cuddles. Zany Gray Germs Are Sold By Kremlin.
  • In reverse order: Kry Brother! SeAs of Germany and Gaul sink copper ships Nice and Cold From Manx to Crimea, Vancouver to Timor, and Scandinavia to the California Koast.[32]

Groups[edit]

Group 1 (alkali metals)[edit]

H Li Na K Rb Cs Fr
  • Highly Nasty Kids Rub Cat's Fur.[15]

Happy Little Nasty Kids Rub Cat's Fur

Group 2 (alkaline earth metals)[edit]

Be Mg Ca Sr Ba Ra
  • Bearded Muggers Came Straight Back Rapidly.
  • Beer Mugs Can Serve Bar Rats.[15]

Group 13[edit]

B Al Ga In Tl
  • Boring Aluminum Galley’s Indigestible Tally-list.[33]
  • Bears Always Give Indians Trouble.[15]
  • B A G I T (bag it)
  • Bounding Alligator's Gates Increase Terribly
  • Bring All Gas In Thailand

Group 14[edit]

C Si Ge Sn (tin) Pb (lead)
  • Can Silly Germans Snatch (Tiny) Public (Lead).
  • Can Simple Germans Snare (Tiny) Public (Lead)?[15]

Group 15 (pnictogens)[edit]

N P As Sb Bi
  • New Popes Assign Subordinate Bishops.[15]
  • Non-Profit As anti-money Business. *

Group 16 (chalcogens)[edit]

O S Se Te Po
  • Oversized Sailors Sell and Tell about Polo cologne.
  • Old TSangpo Seem Terribly Polluted.[15]
  • Oliver Smith Sells Tea Pots.

Group 17 (halogens)[edit]

F Cl Br I At
  • Fleeing Chlorine-layers & Bromine, I’d Astonish.[33]
  • Fairy Clowns Broil Innocent Ants.[15]

Group 18 (noble gases)[edit]

He Ne Ar Kr Xe Rn
  • Hero Needs Arguable Kryptic Xes. Right-on.[33]
  • He Never Arrived; Karen eXited with Ron.[15]

Transition metals[edit]

First[edit]

Sc Ti V Cr Mn Fe Co Ni Cu Zn
  • Scary Tiny Vicious Creatures Mean Females Come Nightly to Club Z.[15]
  • Scabby Tim Violates Crummy, Mangy, Ferrets, Cows and Nice Cute Zebras.[17]
  • Saint Thomas Very Carefully Made Five Completely New Copies of Zarathustha.[34]

Second[edit]

Y Zr Nb Mo Tc Ru Rh Pd Ag Cd
  • Yes Sir, Nob. Most Technicians Rub Rod's Pale Silver Cadillac.[15]

Third[edit]

La ... Hf Ta W Re Os Ir Pt Au Hg
  • Larry's Half Taken, Wendy Reached Out Her Plate Audibly, Helga.[15]

Lanthanides and actinides[edit]

Lanthanides[edit]

(La) Ce Pr Nd Pm Sm Eu Gd Tb Dy Ho Er Tm Yb Lu
  • Lame Celibate Prudes Need Promiscuous Smut with European Gods. Troublesome Dying Ho, it's Erotic Time, You bitch Lust!
  • Ladies Can't Put Nickels Properly in Slot-machines. Every Girl Tries Daily, However, Every Time You Look.[34]

Actinides[edit]

(Ac) Th Pa U Np Pu Am Cm Bk Cf Es Fm Md No Lr
  • Radiant Acting Thoroughly Protects yoUr Nepotism, Plutocratic America Cures-me & Berkeley California, Einstein Firmly Mended Noble Lawreins.[33]
  • Three Planets: Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. Amy Cured Berkeley, California. Einstein and Fermi Made Noble Laws.[15]

Miscellaneous[edit]

56 in sequence
He Li Be B C N O F Ne Na Mg Al Si P S Cl Ar
K Ca Sc Ti V Cr Mn Fe Co Ni Cu Zn Ga Ge As Se Br Kr
Rb Sr Y Zr Nb Mo Tc Ru Rh Pd Ag Cd In Sn Sb Te I Xe
Cs Ba
  • Here Lies Benjamin Bones. Cry Not Oh Friend Needlessly.
Nature Magnifies All Simple People Sometimes Clowns And
Kings Can Scream Till Vast Crowds Moan. Fear Conquers Neither Courageous Zealous
Gallant Gents. As Seen Brown Karate Robes Strip Yobs. Zurich Noble Mortals Track Ruddy Rhubarb. Paid Silver Candid
Indian Sons Sobbing Tears In Xcess Cease Bawling.[28]

Abundance of elements[edit]

On Earth's crust[edit]

Oxygen > Silicon > Aluminum > Iron (Fe) > Calcium > Magnesium (Mg) > Sodium (Na) > Potassium (K)
(The rest makes only 1%)
  • Oh See Al Fee Cah Mig NacK.[9]

Biochemistry[edit]

Krebs cycle[edit]

To remember Krebs cycle (citric acid cycle, tricarboxylic acid cycle);

CitrateAconitateIsocitrateOxalosuccinateα-KetoglutarateSuccinateFumarateMalateOxaloacetate
  • Caesar’s Armies Invaded Other Kingdoms Searching For Many Oranges.[9]

Plant nutrients[edit]

To remember the elements necessary for agriculture;

Carbon, Hydrogen, Calcium, Iron (Fe), Magnesium (Mg), Manganese (Mn), Copper (Cu), Molybdenum, Chlorine (Cl), Boron
  • C (see) Hopkins CaFe, Mighty-good Man, Cu (see your) Money, hope they are Closed or out of Business.[35]

For remembering macronutrients;

Carbon, Hydrogen, Oxygen, Phosphorus, Potassium, Nitrogen, Sulfur, Calcium, Iron (Fe), and Magnesium
  • C. HOPKiN'S CaFe Mg (C. Hopkins coffee mug).

Essential amino acids[edit]

Isoleucine, Leucine, Lysine, Serine, Tyrosine, Glycine, Alanine, Cysteine, Glutamate, Asparate, Arginine, Glutamine, Histadine, Methionine, Phenylalanine, Threonine, Tryptophan, Valine, Histidine, Asparagine, (Selenocysteine - usually omitted)
  • PVT TIM HaLL[36] and TT HALL Very IMPortant.[37]
  • LIFT HIM KIW(V)I
  • TV FILM HW(R)K.
  • Any Help In Learning These Little Molecules Proves Truly Valuable.[38] This method begins with the two amino acids that need some qualifications as to their requirements.
  • There as [a] fat man [that] hated vanilla icing, [but] loved Kit-Kats.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Peter J. Mikulecky, Michelle Rose Gilman, Kate Brutlag (2008). "Cats+have+paws"+chem&hl=en&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=cats have paws&f=false AP Chemistry For Dummies (Illustrated ed.). John Wiley & Sons, 2008. p. 30. ISBN 9780470389768. 
  2. ^ Kevin M. Dunn (16 March 2010). Scientific Soapmaking: The Chemistry of the Cold Process. Clavicula Press. pp. 386–. ISBN 978-1-935652-09-0. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c d Subhash Jain (1 January 2009). Improve Your Memory. Prabhat Prakashan. p. 117. ISBN 978-81-8430-035-2. Retrieved 28 December 2012. 
  4. ^ Nick Lane (26 March 2004). Oxygen: The Molecule that Made the World. Oxford University Press. pp. 18–. ISBN 978-0-19-860783-0. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  5. ^ Rene Fester Kratz, PhD (2 June 2009). Molecular and Cell Biology For Dummies. John Wiley & Sons. pp. 70–. ISBN 978-0-470-43066-8. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  6. ^ "Chemistry - Mnemonic". Chemistrydaily.com. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  7. ^ Mrs Jacqueline Hilary Briggs, Rex M Heyworth. Lcg Ol Chemistry. Pearson Education South Asia. pp. 142–. ISBN 978-981-06-0008-2. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  8. ^ http://lsc.ucdavis.edu/~holliste/Jim2A/nomenclature_Jim.pdf
  9. ^ a b c "Mnemonics for chem 3 2010.ppt" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-10-16. 
  10. ^ http://resources.teachnet.ie/pkavanagh/2005/electrochemicalSeries.pdf
  11. ^ 15th page
  12. ^ Oon Hock Leong/ Edmund Ang Joon Aik (2007). for remember alkali metals&f=false Chemistry expression: an inquiry approach. 'O' level science (chemistry) [textbook]. Panpac Education Pte Ltd. p. 243. ISBN 9789812711656. Retrieved 27 January 2012. 
  13. ^ Syamal, Arun. for remember alkali metals&f=false "Metals, Non-metals and Metallurgy". Living Science Chemistry 10. Ratna Sagar. p. 97. ISBN 9788183322898. Retrieved 27 January 2012. 
  14. ^ http://www.freechemteacher.org/Recommended_Resources_files/Mnemonics for Chemistry.pdf
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m http://bradley.bradley.edu/~campbell/mnemonic.html
  16. ^ "Chemistry Mnemonics". Bookbuilder.cast.org. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  17. ^ a b "Amazing Science Experiments". The Science Cupboard. Retrieved 2012-08-09. 
  18. ^ John Watts, Aleksander Jedrosz, Susan Loxley (2006). to remember the order of electromagnetic waves&f=false Gcse Edexcel Science. Letts and Lonsdale. p. 81. ISBN 9781905129638. Retrieved 27 January 2012. 
  19. ^ Jonathan Dee, H. Stephen Stoker (2009). Remember diCarboxylic acids&f=false Organic and Biological Chemistry (5 ed.). Cengage Learning. p. 157. ISBN 9780547168043. 
  20. ^ William Henry Brown, Brent L. Iverson (2009). Remember Carboxylic acids&f=false Organic chemistry (5, illustrated ed.). Cengage Learning. p. 621. ISBN 9780495388579. Retrieved 27 January 2012. 
  21. ^ "Mnemonic: Dicarboxilic Acids". Ict4us.com. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  22. ^ "Organic Chemistry Nomenclature". Translationjournal.net. 1997-11-24. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  23. ^ a b "MCAT Mnemonics Organic Chemistry Flash Cards". Cram.com. 2008-08-16. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  24. ^ a b "Mnemonic devices for: Chemistry". Mnemonic-device.eu. Retrieved 2012-08-09. 
  25. ^ http://pubs.acs.org/doi/pdf/10.1021/ed084p1918
  26. ^ Table.pdf
  27. ^ a b c "Mnemonic: Sentences to remember the elements". Ict4us.com. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  28. ^ a b "Science Jokes:11. MNEMONICS : 11.5 CHEMISTRY". Jcdverha.home.xs4all.nl. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  29. ^ Chemical formula. "Periodic table mnemonic (memory device)". Chemicalformula.org. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  30. ^ "Kids Tips for Easy Learning - Mnumonics". Betterendings.org. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  31. ^ Martin Berry (30 Nov 1972). table mnemonic&f=false "A dictionary of mnemonics". New Scientist (Reed Business Information. (Eyre Mithuen)). p. 535. 
  32. ^ "CHEMISTRY AND BIOCHEMISTRY A very nice site of Anatomy Mnemonics by John Berger". Img.com.tripod.com. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  33. ^ a b Carl C. Gaither; Alma E. Cavazos-Gaither (2002). Chemically Speaking: A Dictionary of Quotations/selected and Arranged by Carl C. Gaither and Alma E. Cavazos-Gaither. CRC Press. pp. 82–83. ISBN 978-0-7503-0682-9. Retrieved 28 December 2012. 
  34. ^ "Mnemonic: Elements necessary for agriculture". Ict4us.com. Retrieved 2012-08-09. 
  35. ^ Mnemonic medicalmnemonics.com 442 128
  36. ^ ;MATT VIL PLy Essential amino acids Essential amino acids, Mnemonic.
  37. ^ Williams, R.A.D.; Eliot, J.C. (1989). Basic and Applied Dental Biochemistry. Elsevier Health Sciences. p. 149. ISBN 0-443-03144-4. 

Sources[edit]

External links[edit]