What do metals react with?

Under the metals mean a group of elements, which is presented in the form of the most simple substances. They have characteristic properties, namely high electrical and thermal conductivity, positive temperature coefficient of resistance, high ductility and metallic luster.

Note that of the 118 chemical elements that have been discovered at the moment, the metals should be attributed:

  • among the group of alkaline earth metals 6 elements;
  • among alkali metals, 6 elements;
  • among transition metals 38;
  • in the group of light metals 11;
  • among the semimetals 7 elements
  • 14 among lanthanides and lanthanum,
  • 14 in the actinide and actinium group,
  • Outside the definition are beryllium and magnesium.

Based on this, metals are 96 elements. Let us consider in more detail how metals react. Since at the external electronic level most metals have a small amount of electrons from 1 to 3, they can act as reducing agents in most of their reactions (that is, they donate their electrons to other elements).

Reactions with the most simple elements

  • In addition to gold and platinum, absolutely all metals react with oxygen. Note also that the reaction at high temperatures occurs with silver, but silver (II) oxide does not form at normal temperatures. Depending on the properties of the metal, oxides, superperoxides and peroxides form as a result of reaction with oxygen.

Let us give examples of each of the chemical education:

  1. lithium oxide - 4Li + O2= 2Li2O;
  2. potassium peroxide - K + O2= KO2;
  3. sodium peroxide - 2Na + O2= Na2O2.

In order to obtain a peroxide oxide, it must be reduced with the same metal. For example, Na2O2+ 2Na = 2Na2O. With low-active and medium-sized metals, a similar reaction will occur only when heated, for example: 3Fe + 2O2= Fe3O4.

  • Metals can only react with active metals with nitrogen, but at room temperature only lithium can interact, thus forming nitrides - 6Li + N2= 2Li3N, however, when heated, this chemical reaction occurs 2Al + N2= 2AlN, 3Ca + N2= Ca3N2.
  • Absolutely all metals react with sulfur, as with oxygen, with the exception of gold and platinum. Note that iron can interact only when heated with sulfur, thus forming a sulfide: Fe + S = FeS
  • Only active metals can react with hydrogen. These include metals of group IA and IIA, except beryllium. Such reactions can be carried out only with heating, forming hydrides.

    Since the degree of oxidation of hydrogen is considered to be? 1, then the metals in this case act as reducing agents: 2Na + H2= 2NaH.

  • The most active metals also react with carbon. As a result of this reaction, acetylides or methanides are formed.

Consider what metals react with water and what they give as a result of this reaction? Acetylene when interacting with water will produce acetylene, and methane will result from the reaction of water with methanides. We give examples of these reactions:

  1. Acetylene - 2Na + 2C = Na2C2;
  2. Methane - Na2C2+ 2H2O = 2NaOH + C2H2.

Acid reaction with metals

Metals with acids may also react differently. With all acids, only those metals react, which in a row stand for the electrochemical activity of metals to hydrogen.

Let us give an example of a substitution reaction, which shows what metals react with. In another way, this reaction is called redox: Mg + 2HCl = MgCl2+ H2^.

Some acids can also interact with metals that stand after hydrogen: Cu + 2H2SO4= CuSO4+ SO2^ + 2H2O.

Note that the diluted acid can react with the metal according to the following classical scheme: Mg + H2SO4= MgSO4+ H2^.