Which of the following group 15
oxides is considered basic? (A) Sb2O3, (B) P2O5, (C) Bi2O5, (D)
N2O5, or (E) NO2.
The group 15 elements, also called
the pnictogens, include nitrogen, phosphorus, arsenic, antimony, bismuth, and
moscovium. These elements have the capacity to
form many different types of oxide compounds because they can exist in various
different oxidation states.
Notice that no oxides are listed
for moscovium, a synthetic element, as only a very small amount of moscovium has
been produced and little is known about the compounds it forms.
As we descend group 15, the oxides
of these elements become more basic. Nitrogen at the top of the group
forms the most acidic oxides. Phosphorus oxides are also
acidic. Arsenic and antimony tend to form
amphoteric oxides. This means that the oxides can act
as an acid or a base depending on the conditions. Bismuth near the bottom of the
group forms basic oxides.
To answer the question, we need to
know which of the oxides given is considered basic. Of the group 15 elements, only
bismuth forms basic oxides. So answer choice (C) must be
correct. In conclusion, the group 15 oxide
that is considered basic is Bi2O5, answer choice (C).