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QUESTION

# Zinc phosphide, Zn_3P_2, is often used as a rat poison. Phosphorus has 5 valence electrons. How many valence electrons does each zinc atom lose?

The phosphide anion is formally P^(3-)..........

And the zinc cation is Zn^(2+). When the ions form a salt, clearly they form an electrically neutral species; and thus the formulation of the salt is Zn_3P_2. Each phosphorus atom formally possesses 8 . The 4s^2 on zinc are presumed to be ABSENT, and this centre is a d^10 dication.