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Why are Group 1 metals so reactive and what are they called?

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mike01va

Posted January 22, 2009 at 2:19 PM via web

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Why are Group 1 metals so reactive and what are they called?

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enotechris | College Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

Posted January 22, 2009 at 9:17 PM (Answer #1)

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Group 1 of the Periodic Table, or the Alkali Metals, include lithium, sodium, potassium, rubidium, caesium, and francium.  The columns of the Table reflect a "family" of elements; each member within the family has the same number of electrons in its outer shell, but those electrons are further from the center of the atom (nucleus) going down the column, as a general rule.  All atoms tend towards a completely full outer shell, some achieving this by shedding electrons, others by gaining them. In the case of the Alkali family, each possesses a single electron in its outermost shell, which they want to "give away" to achieve that more stable  outer shell, which makes them very reactive with other atoms or compounds that want an additional electron in their outer shell to achieve stability. 

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atyourservice | Student, Grade 10

Posted May 28, 2014 at 10:17 PM (Answer #3)

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The metals in group 1 are known as the alkali metal. These metals are so reactive because they all have 1 valence electron and they want to "get rid" of this one electron in order to gain a pseudo noble gas configuration, therefore making them really reactive with other atoms "looking" for an electron.

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