Group 1 and group 7 elements
Metals react with non-metals to form salts - for example, sodium chloride. When they are molten, these compounds conduct electricity, which shows that they are made up of charged particles called ions.
When a metal reacts with a non-metal, each metal atom loses the electron, or electrons, from its outer shell. The atom loses negative electrons but still has the same number of positive protons, so it has an overall positive charge. It's not an atom now. Instead it is called an ion. Here are some examples of metal ions:
|Element||Atom diagram||Ion diagram|
Lithium is in Group 1. It has one electron [electron: An electron is a very small negatively-charged particle found in an atom in the space surrounding the nucleus. ] in its outer shell.
When this electron is lost, a lithium ion Li+ is formed. A lithium ion has the same electronic structure as a helium atom (He).
Sodium is also in Group 1. It has one electron in its outer shell.
When this electron is lost, a sodium ion Na+ is formed. A sodium ion has the same electronic structure as a neon atom (Ne).
Magnesium is in Group 2. It has two electrons in its outer shell.
When these electrons are lost, a magnesium ion Mg2+ is formed. A magnesium ion has the same electronic structure as a neon atom (Ne).
Calcium is also in Group 2. It has two electrons in its outer shell.
When these electrons are lost, a calcium ion Ca2+ is formed. A calcium ion has the same electronic structure as an argon atom (Ar).
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