Gold(Au) Electron Configuration: 7 Facts You Should Know!

A chemical element with the symbol “Au” is gold. Let us look at some additional facts about gold.

Gold is a vibrant yellow metal that is present in its purest form and is soft and malleable. It is a precious metal that is used in coinage, jewelry, and some other arts. It is also one of the least reactive elements.

More information on the electronic configuration diagram, electronic configuration notation, and the orbital diagram is covered in this article.

How to write Au electron configuration

A transition metal element ‘Gold’ contains 79 electrons in total. These electrons are arranged by the rules of various orbits. There are two ways to arrange the electrons in a gold atom. Pauli’s Exclusion principle and Aufbau principle.

Au electron configuration diagram

As shown in the diagram below, the electrons begin to fill, as they are arranged in increasing order of their energies.

Au electronic configuration diagram

Au electron configuration notation

Au has 79 electrons. so according to Aufbau’s Principle, it will be 1s2, 2s2, 2p6, 3s2, 3p6, 4s2, 3d10, 4p6, 5s2, 4d10, 5p6,6s1, 4f14 and 5d10. The starting electrons can also be written as a noble gas configuration, such as Xe having atomic number 54, as Xe54 4f14 5d10 6s1.

Au unabbreviated electron configuration

When there is no noble gas configuration for the starting electrons, this is referred to as an unabbreviated electronic configuration. Hence, for Au it will be 1s2, 2s2, 2p6, 3s2, 3p6, 4s2, 3d10, 4p6, 5s2, 4d10, 5p6,6s1, 4f14 and 5d10.

ground state Au electron configuration

The ground state electronic configuration means when the electrons are in the ground state when there is neither gain nor loss of electrons hence for Au it will be Xe54 4f14 5d10 6s1

excited state of Au electron configuration

Au+ : Xe54 4f14 5d10 6s0 and Au: Xe54 4f14 5d10 6s2 . When electrons are excited, this means that either electron are gained or lost, with Au+ denoting the loss of electrons with a 79-1=78 electron count and Au denoting the gain of electrons with a 79+1=80 electron count.

ground state Au orbital diagram

Au orbital diagram

Au3+ electron configuration

Au3+: Xe54 4f14 5d8 6s0 (loss of 3 electrons) but this loss would require a high amount of energy and will be very unstable because it contains completely filled ‘d’ orbital.


The only stable isotope of gold is 197Au, and it can be drawn into single-atom wire and is resistant to the majority of acids. Gold is even the oldest metal that humans have ever recorded.

Mansi Sharma

Hello, viewers I am Mansi Sharma. I'm a medicinal chemist with a postgraduate degree. I love all facets of chemistry, and I do think that it is present everywhere, so let us explore what chemistry is all about together. Let us connect through LinkedIn

Recent Posts