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Metals are the materials that are capable of donating electrons for a good cause i.e. to form a material superior to itself. The main reasons for donating or accepting an electron is to increase the electrical conductivity or thermal conductivity of the materials.

Photo by Andre Moura

Metals can be solid at room temperature but some exceptions are also there such as Mercury which is a liquid at room temperature.

Now if two or more metals are mixed or a metal or a nonmetal is mixed they form Alloys.

In chemistry, the word Metals are used to denote the elements, which are capable of donating electrons and becoming positive ions. Apart from the good conductivity they also are sonorous i.e. means they produce sound when beaten.

Now, apart from metals, there have been two other classes of nonmetals and metalloids. Nonmetals are the substances that do not donate electrons, they just share electrons.

When metals react they are usually Alkali metals or alkali earth metals. For example –Na (sodium ) and Ca (calcium).

When metals react they produce oxygen and oxides of these metals are basic in nature. Did you know that sodium (Na) floats on water and you should not try to see that?

When copper metals are burned it forms bronze which is again an alloy and is widely used in the industry.

Draw a zig-zag line from the element Boron to the element polonium. The element that this line passes is Metalloids.

The elements which are above this line are non-metals. The rest all are Metals.

Back to: Basics of Material Science

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