You are watching: Sodium and chlorine react to form sodium chloride
Neutral atoms and also their connected ions have really different physical and tasiilaq.netical properties. Sodium atoms form sodium metal, a soft, silvery-white metal that burns intensely in air and also reacts explosively through water. Chlorine atoms type chlorine gas, Cl2, a yellow-green gas the is very corrosive come most metals and an extremely poisonous come animals and plants. The vigorous reaction between the elements sodium and chlorine develops the white, crystalline compound sodium chloride, typical table salt, which has sodium cations and chloride anions (Figure \(\PageIndex1\)). The compound created of these ions exhibits nature entirely various from the properties of the aspects sodium and chlorine. Chlorine is poisonous, yet sodium chloride is vital to life; salt atoms reaction vigorously with water, but sodium chloride just dissolves in water.
When 2 atoms technique each other, they have actually the potential to bond (or connect). If a metal and a nonmetal interact, then an ionic bond will result. These varieties of bonds involve the metal donating it(s) valence electron(s) come a nonmetal. Together the digital transfer occurs, both atoms will certainly achieve an ext stable confirmations. The end result will it is in a less reactive compound. These type of types are written of both cations and anions. In addition, they space crystalline and also solid in nature (Figure \(\PageIndex2\)). A few examples of real-world ionic compounds would be NaCl (table salt) and NaF (active ingredient in toothpaste).The formula for table salt is NaCl. The is the an outcome of Na+ ions and also Cl- ion bonding together (Figure \(\PageIndex3\)). If sodium metal and also chlorine gas mix under the appropriate conditions, they will kind salt. The salt loses an electron, and also the chlorine gains the electron. This reaction is very favorable since of the electrostatic attraction between the particles. In the process, a an excellent amount that light and heat is released. The result salt is mainly unreactive — it is stable. It will certainly not undergo any type of explosive reactions, uneven the sodium and chlorine the it is do of.
Figure \(\PageIndex2\) NaCl crystals.
(Public Domain; NASA).
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