1.000 g of vanadium is mixed with 8.000 g of bromine. After the elements react, some bromine is left over, along with a single compound that contains the two elements. The excess bromine is removed and allowed to react with excess sodium sulfite and excess sodium hydroxide, producing a mixture that contains 2.93 g of sodium sulfate. The balanced equation for this second reaction is:
2NaOH + Na2SO3 + Br2 -> 2NaBr + Na2SO4 + H2O
Based on this info, determine the empirical formula of the compound that was formed when vanadium reacted with bromine.
The Attempt at a Solution
Well, I know that my endgoal here is to find the moles of vanadium and moles of bromine for the product in the first reaction. Once I get there, I'm pretty much all set to go.
To start, I used the given amount of vanadium/bromine to find moles of vanadium/bromine. Since I know vanadium is the limiting reactant, I used my calculated moles of bromine (left over) to find the amount of bromine left over from the reaction. At this point, I was unsure what to do next. Mostly, I am confused about what I need to do with the given amount of sodium sulfate (and how the second reaction is relevant to the problem).