The activity of metals Classifying Metals based on Activity
Predicting the Product that Main group Metal reaction

The task ofMetals

The main difference in between metals is the ease with whichthey undergo sdrta.netical reactions. The aspects toward the bottomleft edge of the routine table room the steels that space themost active in the sense of gift the most reactive.Lithium, sodium, and potassium every react through water, for example.The price of this reaction increases as us go under this column,however, since these elements become much more active as they becomemore metallic.

You are watching: Lithium is more active than aluminum

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Classifying MetalsBased top top Activity

The metals are often separated into four classes top top the communication oftheir activity, as displayed in the table below.

Common Metals separated into great on theBasis of their Activity


Class ns Metals: The energetic Metals
Li, Na, K, Rb, Cs (Group IA)
Ca, Sr, Ba (Group IIA)
Class II Metals: The Less energetic Metals
Mg, Al, Zn, Mn
Class III Metals: The structure Metals
Cr, Fe, Sn, Pb, Cu
Class IV Metals: The Coinage Metals
Ag, Au, Pt, Hg

The most energetic metals space so reactive the they readilycombine v the O2 and H2O vapor in theatmosphere and also are as such stored under an inert liquid, suchas mineral oil. These metals are discovered exclusively in teams IAand IIA of the routine table.

Metals in the second class room slightly less active. Theydon"t react v water in ~ room temperature, however they reactrapidly with acids.

The third class has metals such together chromium, iron, tin,and lead, i beg your pardon react only with strong acids. It also containseven less active metals such together copper, which only dissolves whentreated with acids that can oxidize the metal.

Metals in the fourth course are so unreactive they areessentially inert in ~ room temperature. These steels are ideal formaking jewelry or coins because they do not react v the vastmajority that the substances with which they come right into dailycontact. Together a result, they room often referred to as the "coinagemetals."

Predicting the Productof Main team Metal reactions

The product of countless reactions between main group metals andother elements can it is in predicted native the electron configurationsof the elements.

Example: take into consideration the reaction between sodium and also chlorine toform sodium chloride. The takes an ext energy to remove an electronfrom a salt atom to form an Na+ ion than we obtain backwhen this electron is included to a chlorine atom to kind a Cl-ion. Once these ions are formed, however, the pressure of attractionbetween these ion liberates enough energy to make the followingreaction exothermic.


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Ho = -411.3 kJ/mol

The net effect of this reaction is to carry one electronfrom a neutral salt atom to a neutral chlorine atom to type Na+and Cl- ion that have actually filled-shell configurations.

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Potassium and hydrogen have the adhering to electronconfigurations.


K: 4s1 H: 1s1

When these aspects react, an electron has to be transferredfrom one facet to the other. We have the right to decide which aspect shouldlose one electron by compare the an initial ionization power forpotassium (418.8 kJ/mol) with that because that hydrogen (1312.0 kJ/mol).

Potassium is much more likely to shed anelectron in this reaction, which method that hydrogen benefit anelectron to kind K+ and H- ions.

See more: How To Know Which Fraction Is Bigger With Different Denominators

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Practice trouble 1:

Write a well balanced equation for the complying with reaction.

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