Is potassium neutral (inert), how many electrons does it have?

Expert Answers
justaguide eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Potassium is not inert in nature. It is a reactive alkali metal. The potassium atom has 19 electrons in its electron shell with a configuration of 2, 8, 10, 1. This is one more than the nearest noble gas configuration of 2, 8, 10. The potassium atom has to lose one electron to achieve a stable electron configuration.

Potassium atoms take part in reactions with elements that can accept an electron. The result is an ionic compound with a positively charged potassium ion and another negatively charged ion. The two oppositely charged ions are attracted to each other as the net charge becomes zero.

givingiswinning | Student

Potassium is not inert. It has 19 electrons.

atyourservice | Student

Potassium is not inert because in order for an element to be inert it must have its valence electron filled. Since potassium is the 19th element on the periodic table it has 19 electrons.

mohela | Student

Potassium is not inert. It is a soft, low-melting alkali metal which crystallize with bcc lattice. 

No. of electrons : 19

Electronic configuration : [Ar]4s1

Oxidation state : 1 (it never exceeds 1)

Potassium has greater chemical reactivity and its reaction with halogens is vigorous.