5 Alkaline Earth Metal Examples: Facts You Should Know


Alkaline earth metals are one of the most reactive and shiny six chemical elements of group 2 in the periodic table. Let us discuss in brief about the examples.

The examples of alkaline earth metals are listed below-

  1. Magnesium
  2. Beryllium
  3. Strontium
  4. Barium
  5. Calcium
  6. Radium

Magnesium

Magnesium is one of the most important alkaline earth metals with the electron configuration 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2. It appears as a shiny and grey solid with boiling and melting point 1363 K and 923 K respectively. It occurs naturally only in combination with other metals and the most common oxidation state of Mg is +2.

There are three different isotopes available for Mg. They are 24Mg, 25Mg and 26Mg with the availability 79%, 10.0% and 11.0% respectively. Mg is used as in die-casting, production of titanium in Kroll process.

alkaline earth metal examples
 Magnesium Element.
Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

Beryllium

Beryllium (Be) is a steel-grey, strong, light weight and brittle alkaline earth metal with atomic number 4 and molar mass 9.012181 u. It is a second period element having electron configuration 1s2 2s2. Like magnesium it is also a divalent element occurs naturally in the combination with other elements.

Be has a boiling and melting point 2742K and 1560K with density 1.85 g/cm3. It appears as three different isotopes, 7Be, 9Be and 10Be with natural abundance 100 % for 9Be. It is used generally in x-ray images.

Strontium

Strontium is a silver-white soft, yellowish metal with high reactivity and belongs to 5th period. It appears as face-centered cubic lattice. It has molar mass 87.62 u and electron configuration 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d10 4p6 5s2. It is available naturally in the minerals celestine and strontianite.

Sr has melting and boiling point 1050K and 1650K respectively with density 2.64 g/cm3. It is present in total 9 isotopes (82Sr –90Sr) and the abundance of 88Sr is maximum. It is used in cathode-ray tubes in color television.

Barium

Ba is a soft silvery-grey and highly reactive solid alkaline earth metal with molar mass 137.327u. It belongs to 6th period and group 2 having atomic number 56 with electron configuration [Xe] 6s2. It is never obtained as a free element in nature. It has boiling and melting point 2118 K and 1000 K respectively.

It has total eight isotopes present in nature. It also appears in +2 oxidation state and most common minerals of barium is baryte and barium carbonate. Ba is used as getter for vacuum tubes.

Calcium

Calcium is an alkaline earth metal which belongs to the 4th period. It is a dull grey, silvery and pale-yellow colored solid metal with molar mass 40.078 u and electron configuration 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 (atomic number 20). It is a highly reactive metal and forms a dark oxide-nitride layer when reacted with air.

It has melting and boiling point 1115K and 1757K respectively with density 1.55 g/cm3. It is present in different isotopic forms but the abundance of 40Ca is maximum. It is used in steel making due to greater affinity towards oxygen and sulfur.

Calcium Element.
Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

Radium

Radium, discovered by Pierre and Marie Curie, is a radioactive silvery white alkaline earth metal with atomic mass 226 u and atomic number 88 ([Rn] 7s2). It is a 7th period and group 2 element. It reacts with nitrogen when exposed to air and form radium nitride. It has melting and boiling point 973 K and 2010 K respectively.

Among all of its isotopes, 226Ra is most stable and abundant in nature. The crystal structure of Ra is body centered cubic (BCC) and it is used in self luminous paints for watches, nuclear panels, clocks and many more fields.

Conclusion

It can be concluded that all the alkaline earth metals belong to the 2nd group and most of them are highly reactive in nature. These metals are called alkaline earth metals because they form oxide solution after dissolving in water which are alkaline.

Aditi Roy

Hello, I am Aditi Ray, a chemistry SME on this platform. I have completed graduation in Chemistry from the University of Calcutta and post graduation from Techno India University with a specialization in Inorganic Chemistry. I am very happy to be a part of the Lambdageeks family and I would like to explain the subject in a simplistic way. Let's connect through LinkedIn-https://www.linkedin.com/in/aditi-ray-a7a946202

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