What is the name of this compound P4O10?
P is close to O on the periodic table, but this should be named
PHOSPHORUS (V) OXIDE
implying that this is an ionic compound, NOT A COVALENT COMPOUND. To me, this name is a lot better than tetraphosphorus decoxide...but is it obvious that P4O10 should be named as if it were ionic? Not to most chemistry students (or even their teachers!).
It is tetraphosphorus decaoxide.
Phosphorus (V) oxide
It's tetraphosphorus decaoxide. SInce it's covalent you would use prefixes to indicate the subscripts.
Later addition: Technically this answer is not wrong. Both answers can be correct - there is no definite answer in some cases and many chemicals can have many different names. (as it is pointed out in the same article that is referenced above). It also depends what level chemistry you are taking in how you name it. If it is high school chemistry (which I teach), you should assume it is covalent and name it with prefixes.
Check out this address for the structure:
Believe it or not, the name most practicing chemists use is phosphorus pentoxide. This is because its empirical formula is P2O5, and for a long time no one knew the actual structure and so they had no way of knowing that it was really P4O10 and not P2O5. At any rate, Aldrich Chemical Company in their catalog lists three names for P4O10: phosphorus pentoxide, phosphoric anhydride, and phosphorus(V) oxide.
it is phosphorus(v) oxide
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