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Magnesium Oxide Formula

Last updated date: 28th May 2024
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Chemical Formula of Magnesium Oxide

One of the easiest formulas for students to know and retain throughout tests or exams is the Chemical Formula of Magnesium Oxide. Before we get into the formula, let's have a look at the MgO compound name itself. Magnesium oxide, often known as magnesia, is a naturally occurring alkaline earth metal oxide that is mainly created by calcining certain minerals. At high temperatures, it is a solid that is both physically and chemically stable. As a result, it's usually employed in refractory materials.

MgO Compound Name

Magnesium oxide is formed up of the ions Mg2+ and O2-, which are joined by an ionic connection. However, based on the valency, we can conclude that the net charge in the molecules is zero and balanced, with one magnesium and one oxygen atom. As a result, the chemical formula for Magnesium Oxide is MgO.

Properties of Magnesium Oxide Formula 

Molecular formula of magnesium oxide- MgO

Molar Mass of magnesium oxygen symbol- 40.3044 g/mol

Density of magnesium oxygen formula- 3.58 g/cm3

Melting Point- 714 °C

Boiling Point- 1090°C

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Experiment to Show Burning of Magnesium Ribbon Equation

When a piece of magnesium ribbon is ignited, it produces light and heat.


This is a simple demonstration that explains the magnesium oxide symbol and the concept of an exothermic process and one that produces light energy.

Materials Required:

  1. 6-8 cm magnesium ribbon sanded to remove oxide coating

  2. Bunsen burner, charcoal grill lighter or similar

  3. Tongs


Adjust the flame to light blue after lighting the burner. Place the other end of the magnesium ribbon in the flame while holding one end with tongs. Holding the flaming ribbon at arm's length is recommended. Magnesium burns brightly and generates a lot of heat.

2Mg +  O2 → 2MgO (magnesium ribbon formula)

Magnesium oxidation or combustion in air has long been employed in photography and other photochemical reactions as a source of bright light. The energy released in this combustion is due to the reaction of magnesium with oxygen in the air, as shown in magnesium oxide balanced equation:

Magnesium oxide has a heat of formation of -601.83 kJ/mol. When magnesium burns, about 10% of the energy is converted to light, a figure that is unmatched among known energy transformations employed in the production of light.


The light from the burning magnesium ribbon is strong enough to inflict temporary blindness. Avoid gazing directly at the source of light. When magnesium is burned in the air, it produces a lot of heat, which can inflict burns and start a fire in flammable objects. A dry-powder extinguisher must be used because a carbon dioxide fire extinguisher will not extinguish burning magnesium.

Procedure for Balancing a Magnesium Oxide Equation:

To comprehend the stages needed in balancing a chemical equation, consider the chemical interaction between magnesium and oxygen.

Let's start by writing the reaction's word equation.

Magnesium + Oxygen → Magnesium oxide

Step 2: Write the chemical equation for the magnesium-oxygen reaction.

Mg + O2 → MgO

Step 3: Count how many times each element appears on both the LHS and RHS of this equation.

Mg +  O2 → MgO










This is an unbalanced magnesium oxide equation.

On each side of the equation, there are two oxygen atoms, but one magnesium atom on the reactants' side and two on the product's side. As a result, on the left-hand side, multiply the magnesium atom by two.





1 X 2 = 2





The balanced equation is

2Mg +  O2 → 2MgO

The number of atoms in each reactant element equals the number of atoms in each product element.

Using the Arrow to write specific conditions The reaction takes place in the presence of heat.' When magnesium is heated, it reacts with oxygen in the air to generate magnesium oxide.

Different Types of Chemical Formulas

The chemical formula of a compound usually refers to its' molecular formula, which represents the total number of atoms of each component element in 1 molecule of the compound. The chemical compounds' compositions can be expressed in a variety of ways. 

A Chemical Formula can be expressed in a variety of ways, including:

  • Empirical Formula- The ratio of the elements contained in a given chemical compound is represented by the empirical formula. The majority of empirical equations are derived through the study of experimental data. The molecular formulas can be used to derive empirical formulae.

  • Molecular Formula-The number of components in a given molecule may be determined using the molecular formula. The elements are represented by their symbols in molecular formulas, and the number of atoms in each given element in the molecule is indicated with the subscript.

  • Structural Formula- The structural formula of a given chemical compound supplies understanding into the configuration of the atoms in the given molecule.


Magnesium oxide (MgO), or magnesia, is a white hygroscopic solid mineral that occurs naturally as periclase and is a source of magnesium. MgO is prized as a refractory material that is physically and chemically stable at high temperatures.

FAQs on Magnesium Oxide Formula

1.Why is magnesium oxide's formula MgO?

Magnesium oxide is formed up of the ions Mg2+ and O2-, which are joined by an ionic connection. However, based on the valency, we can conclude that the net charge in the molecules is zero and balanced, with one magnesium and one oxygen atom. As a result, the formula for Magnesium Oxide is MgO. Students can learn more about Magnesium and its chemical properties when reacting with different elements at Vedantu’s official website. The student can also explore through the list of most important questions that are prepared for the students who have less time and need to score good marks.

2. Is Magnesium Oxide an Antacid or a Laxative?

Magnesium oxide is a supplement that helps the body maintain its magnesium levels. Magnesium oxide is also used as an antacid or a laxative to relieve occasional constipation. Magnesium has many more important properties like this. To learn more about Magnesium and its properties, the student can check out Vedantu;’s official website or Youtube channel where they’ll find a ton of FREE resources that will help them to understand Magnesium and other elements. They can also find FREE Video lectures and Live sessions on youtube that will help them to clear their concept.

3. Why Does Magnesium Burn So Bright?

Magnesium combines with oxygen to produce a bright light that briefly blinds you. Because the reaction produces a lot of heat, magnesium burns brightly. Magnesium provides two electrons to oxygen in an exothermic process, resulting in powdered magnesium oxide (MgO). That’s the reason why Magnesium burns so bright. To study more about Magnesium, the student can check out Vedantu’s official website where they’ll find a lot of free resources that will help them to break down the concept and bring good marks. The content is FREE for everyone and the students can use it for their good.

4.How to study Chemical Formulas for board exams and competitive exams like JEE?

Chemistry of higher classes is filled with many formulas that can often scare the student. If they don't understand the basics, they'll feel completely blank during later chapters. Students should start by going through NCERT and clearing their basics. If they need help, they can use Vedantu's FREE video lectures that are available for everyone on Vedantu's Youtube Channels. Several Live sessions also occur on the channel where the child can ask their doubts and clear their concepts.  It's important to understand why numbers are put on chemical numbers and what they represent. They should make their notes to refer to when they face a problem or get stuck. Students can also refer to the List of Important Questions provided by Vedantu, specially created by keeping exam ideology in mind.  They should also solve the previous year's papers, which will help the student to understand the question asking pattern. These are some of the things the student can do to strengthen their common knowledge of Chemical formulas and other topics of Chemistry to bring good marks. They should focus more and more on practice as it will help them a lot and with proper guidance and hard work, they can score a good rank in competitive exams.

5.What is Magnesium Hydroxide?

Magnesium Hydroxide is a naturally occurring inorganic base that is not harmful. Its aqueous solution is known as milk of magnesia, which is a popular antacid. Magnesium Hydroxide has the chemical formula Mg(OH)2. Furthermore, the same is said to have a molar mass of 58.32 g/mol. The two hydroxyl groups are linked to the central Mg. Because it is ionic, the molecule mostly occurs as Mg2+ and OH- ions. Magnesium Hydroxide is an odorless white solid form of magnesium. It weighs 2.34 g/mL and has a density of 2.34 g/mL. It has a melting point of 350 degrees Celsius. When present at extremely high temperatures, solid Magnesium Hydroxide undergoes an endothermic breakdown, which means it absorbs heat from the surrounding environment. It decomposes into Magnesium Oxide and water, making it an effective smoke suppressant and fire extinguisher. Magnesium Hydroxide is commonly used as an antacid due to its somewhat basic composition and lack of toxicity. As an antacid, it works by neutralizing the stomach acids of humans and avoiding indigestion and heartburn. It's used as an underarm deodorant, a laxative, an antiperspirant, a therapy for sores, a wastewater treatment, and a fire retardant. These were some physical properties, chemical properties and some uses of Magnesium Hydroxide but if not used with care be harmful. So, experiments with Magnesium Hydroxide or other chemicals should be done under adult supervision.