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Ionisation Enthalpy of Transition Elements

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Last updated date: 21st Jul 2024
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What are Transition Elements?

Elements with partially filled d orbitals are referred to as transition elements according to IUPAC, a transition element is an element with a partially filled d subshell of electrons or an element with a partially filled d orbital that can form stable cations. Any element that falls under the periodic table's d-block, which includes groups 3–12, is typically regarded as a transition element. Even the lanthanides and actinides, which are members of the f-block, can be categorised as transition elements. The ionisation enthalpy of an element can be defined as the amount of energy required to remove an electron from an isolated gaseous atom in its gaseous state.


Electronic Configuration of Transition Elements

It should be noted that the electron configuration in some of these elements corresponds to (n-1)$${{d}^{5}}$$ n$${{s}^{1}}$$ or (n-1)$${{d}^{10}}$$ n$${{s}^{1}}$$. This is due to the stability that the partially or entirely filled electron orbitals offer. In the below image, you can see the electronic configuration of some transition elements. Ionisation enthalpies of transition metals are intermediate between those of s-block and p- block elements as they are placed between s-block and p-block in the periodic table.


Many transitional elements, such as chromium, do not obey the Aufbau principle. The comparatively small energy difference between the 3d and 4s orbitals and the 4d and 5s orbitals is thought to be the cause of this.


Properties of Transition Elements

Since their electrical structures differ from other transition metals, the elements zinc, cadmium, and mercury are not regarded as transition elements, as was previously said. The properties of the remaining d-block elements, however, are quite comparable, and this similarity may be seen along each particular row of the periodic table. Below is a list of these characteristics of the transitional elements.

  • These substances and ions are created by these elements. The electron d-d transition provides an explanation for its colour.

  • The energy difference between these elements' potential oxidation states is quite small. As a result, the transition elements have a variety of oxidation states.

  • These elements produce a large number of paramagnetic compounds due to the unpaired electrons in the d orbital.

  • These elements can be bound to a wide range of ligands. As a result, transition elements can create a wide range of stable complexes.

  • These substances have a high charge to radius ratio.

  • When compared to other elements, transition metals have relatively high densities and a tendency to be hard.

  • Due to the delocalized d electrons' involvement in metallic bonding, these elements have high melting and boiling temperatures.

  • The delocalized d electrons metallic bonding also makes the transition elements excellent electrical conductors.

What is Ionisation Enthalpy?

  • The amount of energy required to liberate the most loosely bound electron from a single gaseous atom in order to produce a gaseous ion is known as the ionisation enthalpy or ionisation energy.

  • It is given in kJ/mol, a calorie-like energy unit.

  • Any particular atom's outermost valence electrons will ionise with a lower energy than its inner-shell electrons.

Ionisation Enthalpy of Transition Elements

The quantity of energy required to be supplied to an element in order to remove a valence electron is referred to as the ionisation enthalpy. The ionisation potential of an element increases with the effective nuclear charge acting on the electrons. This explains why transition elements typically have higher ionisation enthalpies than s-block elements. An element's atomic radius and ionisation energy are somewhat inversely connected. Smaller atoms often have higher ionisation enthalpies than atoms with comparatively larger radii. While advancing along the row, the transition metals' ionisation energies rise.

Ionisation Enthalpy of Transition Elements in Graph

Ionisation Enthalpy of Transition Elements in Graph

Important Questions

1. What is lanthanoid contraction?

Ans: The general term for the decrease in atomic and ionic radii with increasing atomic number is called lanthanoid contraction. With the addition of electrons, the effective nuclear charge increases along the lanthanide series, and the more electrons in the f-subshell lead to insufficient shielding that is unable to counteract the effect of the rising nuclear charge. The effect is a reduction in size.


2. Describe the preparation of potassium dichromate from chromite ore. What is the effect of change of pH on dichromate ions?

Ans: Preparation of Potassium dichromate $({K}_{2}{Cr}_{2}{O}_{7})$:

Potassium dichromate is prepared from chromite ore $$({Fe}{Cr}_{2}{O}_{4})$$ in the following steps.


Step (1):

Preparation of sodium chromate

$${4}{Fe}{Cr}_{2}{O}_{4} {+} {16}{Na}{OH} {+} {7}{O}_{2} \to {8}{Na}{Cr}{O}_{4} {+} {2}{Fe}_{2}{O}_{3} {+} {8}{H}_{2}{O}$$

Step (2):

Conversion of sodium chromate into sodium dichromate

$${2}{Na}_{2}{Cr}{O}_{4} {+} {conc.}{H}_{2}{SO}_{4} \to {Na}_{2}{Cr}_{2}{O}_{7} {+} {Na}_{2}{SO}_{4} {+} {H}_{2}{O}$$

Step(3):

Conversion of sodium dichromate to potassium dichromate

$${Na}_{2}{Cr}_{2}{O}_{7} {+} {2}{K}{Cl} \to {K}_{2}{Cr}_{2}{O}_{7} {+} {2}{Na}{Cl}$$

Potassium dichromate being less soluble than sodium chloride is obtained in the form of orange coloured crystals and can be removed by filtration.


Multiple Choice Questions

1. The first transition element is

a. Copper

b. Nickel

c. Scandium

d. Vanadium

Answer: (c)


2. Transition elements exhibit variable valency because they release electrons from

a. ns orbitals

b. np orbitals

c. (n-1)d orbitals

d. (n-1)d & ns orbitals

Answer: C


Conclusion

Transition elements are substances with partially filled d orbitals, also referred to as transition metals. Transition elements are those that, despite having an incomplete d orbital, can nevertheless form stable cations, according to the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). Ionisation enthalpies are higher for smaller atoms than for larger ones. Along the row, the ionisation energies of the transition metals increase (due to the increase in atomic number).

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FAQs on Ionisation Enthalpy of Transition Elements

1. Why are heavier transition metals more frequent metal bonding? 

The transition metals (with the exception of Zn, Cd, and Hg) are very hard and have low volatility. Their melting and boiling points are high. The high melting points of these metals are attributed to the involvement of greater number of electrons from (n-1)d in addition to the ns electrons in the interatomic metallic bonding. In any row, the melting points of these metals rise to a maximum at d5 except for anomalous values of Mn and Tc and fall regularly as the atomic number increases.

2. Why are transition metals good catalysts?

Transition metals are any of various metallic elements such as chromium, iron, and nickel that have valence electrons in two shells instead of only one. A valence electron refers to a single electron that is responsible for the chemical properties of the atom. Transition metals are good metal catalysts because they easily lend and take electrons from other molecules. A catalyst is a chemical substance that, when added to a chemical reaction, does not affect the thermodynamics of a reaction but increases the rate of reaction.

3. Why are heavier transition metals more frequent in metal bonding?

The transition metals (with the exception of Zn, Cd, and Hg) are very much hard and have low volatility. Their melting and boiling points are high. The high melting points of these metals are attributed to the involvement of greater number of electrons from (n-1)d in addition to the ns electrons in the interatomic metallic bonding. In any row, the melting points of these metals rise to a maximum at d5 except for anomalous values of Mn and Tc and fall regularly as the atomic number increases and also have high enthalpies of atomisation.