# What is the Ionic Charge of Bismuth (Bi)? And Why?

The common Ionic Charges of Bismuth (Bi) are 3+ and 5+.

But the question is how can you find the ionic charge on Bismuth (Bi)?

Well, bismuth is a post-transition element and all the transition and post-transition elements have a variable ionic charge.

The ionic charge of bismuth (or any other transition or post transition elements) depends on what it is bonded with.

So let’s try to find out the ionic charge of Bismuth (Bi) using some examples.

You can also refer to the below video from which you will learn to find charge of any ion.

## How to find the ionic charge of Bismuth (Bi)?

As I mentioned earlier, the ionic charge of Bismuth (Bi) can be found out by looking at what it is bonded with.

So let’s take examples of compounds of Bismuth (Bi) like BiCl3, Bi2O3, Bi2O5, etc.

Example 1: BiCl3
In BiCl3, the Bismuth (Bi) is bonded to Chlorine (Cl).
You know that the ionic charge of Cl is 1-.
So you can easily say that the ionic charge of Bi should be 3+, then only it will get canceled out.
Hence the ionic charge of Bismuth in BiCl3 is 3+.

Example 2: Bi2O3
In Bi2O3, the Bismuth (Bi) is bonded to Oxygen (O).
And again, you know that the ionic charge of O is 2-.
So here also you can easily say that the ionic charge of Bi should be 3+, then only it will get canceled out.
Hence the ionic charge of Bismuth in Bi2O3 is 3+.

Example 3: Bi2O5
Similarly in Bi2O5, the Bismuth (Bi) is bonded to Oxygen (O).
And you know that the ionic charge of O is 2-.
So from this, you can easily say that the ionic charge of Bi should be 5+, then only it will get canceled out.
Hence the ionic charge of Bismuth in Bi2O5 is 5+.

In this way, Bismuth can have variable charges depending on what it is bonded to.

But as seen from the above examples,
The most common charges of Bismuth (Bi) are 3+ and 5+.

I hope you have understood why bismuth has variable ionic charges.

Check out some other related topics for your practice.

Author
##### Jay Rana

Jay is an educator and has helped more than 100,000 students in their studies by providing simple and easy explanations on different science-related topics. With a desire to make learning accessible for everyone, he founded Knords Learning, an online learning platform that provides students with easily understandable explanations.