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As far as I understand, plasma is another stage of matter like solid, liquid or gas. All of these have chemical formulas, however does plasma has chemical formula as well? If it doesn't, what's made of then?

At answers someone said:

Plasma has no chemical formula as it is not a compound or element. Plasma is the fourth stage of matter. Solid -> Liquid -> Gas -> Plasma.

Is that true?

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    $\begingroup$ Since when do the stages of solid, liquid and gas have "chemical formulae"? Do you mean to ask whether e.g. $\text{H}_2\text{O}$ is still $\text{H}_2\text{O}$ in the plasma state? $\endgroup$
    – ACuriousMind
    Commented Mar 6, 2015 at 15:18
  • $\begingroup$ I mean, chemical composition like oxygen has formula: O2. Does plasma corresponds to the same chemical formula? $\endgroup$
    – kenorb
    Commented Mar 6, 2015 at 15:20
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    $\begingroup$ The following link state (in its first sentence) that plasma doesn't have chemical formula. That's my reason of asking to double check if that's true. Or to understand it further more. $\endgroup$
    – kenorb
    Commented Mar 6, 2015 at 15:22
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    $\begingroup$ Plasma folks certainly like to measure the composition of the plasma, but it depends on the exact plasma conditions so it is not unique. $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Commented Mar 6, 2015 at 17:56

2 Answers 2

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When a sufficient amount of (thermal) energy is applied, the molecules will actually dissociate (so water would become hydrogen and oxygen atoms). If there is sufficient enough a temperature, then these will become ionized to make the plasma, for example: $$ \rm H\to H^++e^- $$

The elements in the molecules are still present, so you can say that you have a plasma of hydrogen, if you started with a neutral hydrogen gas, for instance. But in order to be a plasma, the gas needs to become ionized. So the chemical elements are still present, though they will not be in molecules due to the temperatures required for ionization.

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Actually non of the four stage has any chemical formula because it is just a stage. Like H$_{2}$O is a formula of water not the formula of liquid. CO$_{2}$ is a formula of carbon dioxide not the formula of gas. Fe is formula of iron not the formula of solid.

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