The Activity of Metals Classifying Metals Based on Activity
Predicting the Product of Key Group Metal Reactions

The Activity ofMetals

The primary distinction in between metals is the ease through whichthey undergo steustatiushistory.orgical reactions. The aspects toward the bottomleft edge of the periodic table are the steels that are thea lot of active in the sense of being the a lot of reactive.Lithium, sodium, and also potassium all react via water, for instance.The price of this reactivity rises as we go down this column,yet, bereason these elements become even more energetic as they becomeeven more metallic.

You are watching: Which of these groups of metals is the most active

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Classifying MetalsBased on Activity

The metals are regularly separated into four classes on the basis oftheir activity, as shown in the table below.

Usual Metals Divided into Classes on theBasis of Their Activity


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

The most energetic metals are so reenergetic that they readilyintegrate with the O2 and also H2O vapor in theatmosphere and are therefore stored under an inert liquid, suchas actually mineral oil. These metals are discovered solely in Groups IAand IIA of the periodic table.

Metals in the second class are slightly much less energetic. Theydo not react via water at room temperature, however they reactquickly via acids.

The 3rd course contains metals such as chromium, iron, tin,and lead, which react only through solid acids. It likewise containsalso much less energetic metals such as copper, which only dissolves whentreated through acids that can oxidize the steel.

Metals in the fourth class are so unreenergetic they areessentially inert at room temperature. These metals are best formaking jewelry or coins because they carry out not react via the vastmajority of the substances via which they come into dailycontact. As a result, they are regularly called the "coinagesteels."

Predicting the Productof Main Group Metal Reactions

The product of many kind of reactions in between major group steels andvarious other elements have the right to be predicted from the electron configurationsof the aspects.

Example: Consider the reaction in between sodium and chlorine toform sodium chloride. It takes more power to rerelocate an electronfrom a sodium atom to create an Na+ ion than we get backonce this electron is included to a chlorine atom to form a Cl-ion. Once these ions are developed, but, the pressure of attractionin between these ions liberates enough energy to make the followingreactivity exothermic.


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Ho = -411.3 kJ/mol

The net effect of this reactivity is to transport one electronfrom a neutral sodium atom to a neutral chlorine atom to form Na+and Cl- ions that have actually filled-shell configurations.

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Potassium and also hydrogen have the following electronconfigurations.


K: 4s1 H: 1s1

When these elements react, an electron hregarding be transferredfrom one aspect to the other. We can decide which facet shouldshed an electron by comparing the initially ionization power forpotassium (418.8 kJ/mol) with that for hydrogen (1312.0 kJ/mol).

Potassium is much more most likely to shed anelectron in this reaction, which indicates that hydrogen gains anelectron to develop K+ and H- ions.

See more: What Is The Formula For An Ionic Compound That Contains The Elements Magnesium And Chlorine?

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Practice Problem 1:

Write a balanced equation for the adhering to reaction.

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