Reactivity of Metal:
The relative capacity of an atom, molecule, or radical to undergo a chemical reaction with another atom, molecule, or compound (Watch Reactivity of Metal Video to learn more). Metals are solids at room temperature e.g. sodium, aluminium , potassium, magnesium. There are exception to this. Mercury and gallium are metals but they are in liquid state at room temperature. All metals act as reducing agents. Strongly electropositive metals like Mg, Al and Cr act as strong reducing agents while moderately electropositive elements like Zn, Cd and Sn act as moderate reducing agents (Watch Reactivity of Metal Video to learn more ).
Reaction with water – Strongly electropositive metals like Na and K react even with cold water to produce their hydroxides and they evolve hydrogen gas. The heat evolved is not sufficient for the hydrogen to catch fire. Metals like Mg do not react with cold water . They react only with hot water to form hydroxide evolving hydrogen. The elements less electropositive than Na, K and Mg like Al, Fe and Zn do not react with cold or hot water.
Reaction with non-metals – Metals like Mg, Ca, Al etc. react with non-metals like H, S, Cl, Br and I under different conditions of temperature to form their respective salts. However, all metals are not equally reactive so they require different conditions to react with non-metals.
Reaction with acids – Highly reactive metals like Na, Mg and K react with dilute mineral acids like HCl or H2SO4 to form salt and hydrogen gas. These reactions are displacement reactions. If nitric acid is used, the hydrogen evolved gets oxidized to water and hence no hydrogen gas is evolved. Metals like Cu, Ag and Au which are below hydrogen in the reactivity series do not react with dilute mineral acids and do not evolve H2 .
Reactivity of Metal Video
Useful for CBSE, ICSE, NCERT & International Students
Grade : 8
Subject : Chemistry
Lesson : Metals and Non Metals
Topic: Reactivity of Metal Video
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