Does Nickel Conduct Electricity: 9 Important Facts


Nickel(Ni) is a silvery-white metal of atomic number 28. Let us know whether nickel is able to pass electricity or not.

Nickel conducts electricity. Nickel is a metal and like other metals it also has free electrons on its surface. These free electrons usually move in a particular direction to carry electricity in the nickel atom.

When a nickel atom gets ionized,it releases two electrons and becomes Ni²⁺. These two free electrons remain present in the valence shell of Ni atom and help in current conduction.

Let us focus on how nickel conducts electricity,what are the structure and bonding of it and many more related questions in this article.

Is nickel an insulator or a conductor?

Nickel is a metal of group 10 of periodic table. Let us have a look on whether nickel has insulating properties or not.

Nickel is a conductor that carries both current and heat but does not have insulating properties. The movement of free electrons in it is the reason of its conducting properties.  This movement of electrons depicts nickel as a conductor. Contradictorily only strongly bounded electrons are carried by the insulators.

does nickel conduct electricity
Nickel from wikipedia

Besides, that nickel has a finite value of electrical conductivity which is a key factor of current conduction. Though the value is not very high, it is sufficient for carrying electricity.

How does nickel conduct electricity?

Nickel is a metal having ferromagnetic properties. Let us focus on the process by which nickel conducts electricity.

Nickel conducts electricity by the movement of mobile electrons. It has 2 loosely bound valence electrons that jump randomly to one atom from another. When voltage is applied to the Ni atom these electrons move in a specific direction from the negative to the positive side of the supply and electricity passes.

Why does nickel conduct electricity?

Flow of a bunch of electrons in a particular direction means a flow of electric current in that particular direction. Let us focus on the reason of current conduction of Ni.

Nickel conducts electricity as it has the capacity to pass electric current due to the mobility of delocalized electrons present in it. These electrons move in a fixed direction by the effect of applied potential. This flow is current.

What is the electrical conductivity of nickel?

The capacity of a material to carry electric current is known as its electrical conductivity. Let us discuss the electrical conductivity of nickel.

The electrical conductivity of nickel is 14.3 x 10⁶ Siemens per meter. Due to this higher value of electrical conductivity nickel is more prone to conduct electricity.

Is nickel a good conductor for electricity?

Good conductors of electricity are used to have the quality of passing electric current very swiftly through them. Let us focus on nickel to clarify its current carrying capacity.

Nickel is a good conductor of electricity. Mobile electrons present in nickel are the reason for it to be a good conductor. Besides it is a metal having a finite value of electrical conductivity which makes it able to pass electricity at ease.

Nickel is a ferromagnetic metal which can be magnetised very easily at room temperature. Due to this virtue nickel is a good conductor of heat.

Structure and bonding of nickel

Nickel is a crystalline solid metal. Let us discuss the type of structure and bonding that it possesses.

  • Nickel is used to possess a crystalline structure. Face centered cubic(FCC) structure is the specific structure which is possessed by nickel.
  • Nickel atoms are joined by metallic bondings or ionic bondings to make a regular cubical structure.

In the case of Nickel crystals there is one atom at each corner of the crystal and one atom at the center of the crystal which is similar to face centered cubic structure. As Nickel is a metal hence its bonding is ionic bonding.

Properties of nickel

Nickel is used to possess some properties that make it a chosable option for conducting electricity. The properties are:

  • Density of nickel is  8.908 gram/cm³.
  • The melting point and the boiling point of nickel are 1453℃ and 2913℃ respectively.
  • Thermal conductivity of nickel is 90.7 W/m.K.
  • The value of linear thermal coefficient of nickel is 13.4 μm/m.K.
  • Nickel is a very hard metal that has both malleability and ductility  properties.
  • Nickel has seven oxidation states: -2,-1,0,+1,+2,+3 and +4.
  • Nickel is a bivalent metal which means valency of Ni is 2.
  • Nickel gets dissolved into dilute acids very slowly.
  • Nickel is a radioactive metal.
  • The electrical resistivity of nickel is 7.0 x 10⁻⁸ Ωm.
  • Nickel possesses ferromagnetism at room temperature.

Is nickel a good conductor of heat and why?

The materials which allow the flow of heat energy through them very easily are known as good conductors of heat. Let’s talk about the heat conductivity of nickel.

Nickel is a good conductor of heat. The reason is its high value of thermal conductivity. Nickel has a thermal conductivity of approximately 106 W/m.K. This thermal conductivity depicts the quality of a good conductor of heat.

Metals having high values of thermal conductivity are used to be good conductors of heat whereas metals having low values of thermal conductivity are used to be bad conductors of heat.

Do metals conduct electricity when molten?

Molten metals are those metals which are changed in liquid state from solid state with the increase in temperature. Let us focus on the current conduction of molten metals.

Metals conduct electricity when they are molten as they lose their usual  lattice structure due to the rise in temperature. Hence the free electrons within them become more prone to move. This mobility of electrons conducts electricity.

Nickel is used to have high electrical conductivity as well as low electrical resistivity. So it passes on electric current in the molten state. The value of current passing on in the molten state is lesser than the current passing in the solid state of nickel.

Conclusion

Nickel is a hard metal with high vales of electrical and thermal conductivities. These values make nickel capable to conduct current. other than this nickel has ferromagnetism at room temperature. All the facts related to current conduction by nickel have been discussed briefly in this article.

Ankita Biswas

Hi...I am Ankita Biswas. I have done my B.Sc in physics Honours and my M.Sc in Electronics. Currently, I am working as a Physics teacher in a Higher Secondary School. I am very enthusiastic about the high-energy physics field. I love to write complicated physics concepts in understandable and simple words. Let's connect through LinkedIn:https://www.linkedin.com/in/ankita-biswas-b95785230

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