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Metallic Bond - Concept

Teacher/Instructor Kendal Orenstein
Kendal Orenstein

Rutger's University
M.Ed., Columbia Teachers College

Kendal founded an academic coaching company in Washington D.C. and teaches in local area schools. In her spare time she loves to explore new places.

A metallic bond shares electrons but unlike ionic bonds, it does not fill the valence shell octets of the bonding atoms. All of the electrons involved form one huge electron cloud which all the nuclei share. The attraction of the nuclei to the electrons keeps them together. Metallic solids are very conductive because of this electron cloud and are malleable.

Alright so we're going to talk about metallic bonding, we know when a metal and a non-metal come together they make an ionic bond and a ratio of ions we know when two non-metals come together they make a covalent bond and they make molecules. But what happens when two metals come together? Well they actually do metallic bonding and so what actually what it looks like when these metals come together and it can be just one particular metal doesn't necessarily have to be two different metals it's just when metals are together. What actually happens is they actually lose the identity of those electrons and their positively charged nuclei are then sharing their electrons amongst everybody. So that's where you've heard the term sea of electrons and delocalized electrons because the electrons don't belong to a particular atom they actually belong whole metal, so when you look at these negative charges of these electrons they're actually being shared amongst all these guys.

Okay so this is what gives it it's unique chemical property is that this flow of electrons, the electrons are constantly moving and it's been shared amongst all these positive nuclei in metals. So that might give us the reason why melting point is pretty reasonable, they're actually, all the melting point is doing is just making it more fluid and making it more into a liquid shape. So these cations and the negative electrons are able to be moved into a liquid pretty reasonably 232 degrees Celsius is the melting point for tin however the boiling point or making tin into a gas is extremely high compared comparatively 2623 degrees Celsius but boiling point is going to be really high because in boiling points they're just separating out and become a gas. So all these positive charges are actually being separated completely out from each other and making it big gas and that's really difficult to do because these negative charges are holding it all together.

Because these negative charges are there and they're flowing metals are very good conductors of electricity. We know electricity is the flow of electrons and this is basically that there's a flow of electrons. So as you would expect I think there're very good conductors of electricity. Also they're very malleable meaning that they can be hammered into sheets so that's why you've had like thin sheets of metal because these guys can just move around and rearrange themselves pretty quickly and pretty easily. Also they can be made into wires meaning that they're ductile that's why you've seen a lot of metal wire which is really good for actually passing on electricity. So pretty much that is all there's to do with metallic bonding.