Zinc Chemical Properties (25 Facts You Should Know)

Zn or Zinc is a borderline metal, soft in nature, and is found in the Earth’s crust. Let us explain Zinc in detail.

Zn is present in the same group as cadmium and mercury and it is similar to Mg in terms of properties. It has a filled 3d orbital and for this reason, it behaves differently from the rest of the transition elements of the same period. It has a higher reduction potential so it can use different electrolytic cells.

At room temperature, it appears as shiny brittle metals but when the oxidation is removed it appears to be shiny greyish in color. Let us discuss some of the chemical properties of Zinc like melting point, boiling point, atomic number, etc. in this article.

1. Zinc symbol

Symbols are used to express the element by using one or two letters of the English or Latin alphabet of the chemical name. Let us predict the atomic symbol of Zinc.

The atomic symbol of Zinc is “Zn” as the name start with the English alphabet Z. But Z represents an atomic number of every element in the periodic table, so we use the first two consecutive letters of the English alphabet of Zinc to distinguish it from other elements.

Zinc Atomic Symbol

2. Zinc group in the periodic table

Vertical lines or columns of the periodic table are referred to as the respective group of the periodic table. Let us predict the group of Zinc in the periodic table.

The group of Zinc in the periodic table is 12. Because it is a borderline transition metal, and can form dications. So, it is placed in the 12th group as an elementIn the Mendeleev periodic table, it is group 12 but in the modern table, it is placed as IIB group as per the precipitation table.

3. Zinc period in the periodic table

A horizontal line or row of the periodic table where every element is placed by its last principle quantum number is called a period. Let us predict the period of Zinc.

Zinc belongs to period 4 in the periodic table because it has more than 18 electrons in the valence shell. Up to period 3, there will be 18 electrons that are well placed, so the remaining 12 electrons for the Zn get 4th period and 12th group.

4. Zinc block in the periodic table

The orbital where the valence electrons of the element are present is called the block of the periodic table. Let us predict the block of Zinc.

Zinc is a d-block element because the valence electrons are present in the d orbital. Zn also has a 4s orbital but the outermost electrons are present in the 3d orbital as per exchange energy and the Aufbau principle.

5. Zinc atomic number

The value of Z, known as the atomic number, is the total number of electrons. Let us find the atomic number of Zinc.

The atomic number of Zinc is 30, which means it has 38 protons because the number of protons is always equal to the number of electrons. For this reason, they become neutral due to the neutralization of equal and opposite charges.

6. Zinc atomic Weight

The mass of the element is called weight which is measured concerning some standard value. Let us calculate the atomic weight of Zinc.

The atomic weight of Zinc on the 12C scale is 65 which means the weight of Zinc is the 65/12th part of the weight of the carbon element. The original atomic weight of Zinc is 65.38 because the atomic weight is the average weight of all the isotopes of the element.

7. Zinc Electronegativity according to Pauling

Pauling electronegativity is the power to attract any other element for that particular atom. Let us predict the electronegativity of Zinc.

The electronegativity of Zinc according to the Pauling scale is 1.65, which means it is more electropositive in nature and can attract electrons toward itself. The most electronegative atom as per the Pauling scale in the periodic table is fluorine having 4.0 electronegativity.

8. Zinc atomic Density

The number of atoms present per unit volume of any atom is called the atomic density of that respective element. Let us calculate the atomic density of Zinc.

The atomic density of Zinc is 7.14 g/cm3 which can be calculated by diving the mass of Zinc with its volume. Atomic density means the number of atoms present per unit volume but the atomic number is the number of electrons present in the valence and inner orbital.

  • Density is calculated by the formula, atomic density = atomic mass / atomic volume.
  • The atomic mass or weight of Zinc is 65.38 g
  • The volume of the Zinc molecule is 22.4 liter at STP as per Avogardo’s calculation
  • So, the atomic density of Zinc is, 65.38/ (9.15) = 7.14 g/cm3

9. Zinc melting point

Changing to a liquid state from its solid state at a particular temperature is called the melting point of that particular element. Let us find the melting point of Zinc.

The melting point of Zinc is 419.50 C or 692.5K temperature because at room temperature Zinc exists as a solid where it adopts hexagonal close-packed structure. It needs less energy to melt the crystal into a liquid. By increasing the temperature, the elements can be placed in good arrangement.

10. Zinc boiling point

The boiling point is the point when the vapor pressure of an element becomes equal to its atmospheric pressure. Let us find the boiling point of Zinc.

The boiling point of Zinc is 907C or 1180K because it exists in solid form at room temperature and also it is a lighter transition metal element.

The Van der Waal’s force of attraction is low. Hence, high energy of heat is required to boil Zinc. The solid form of Zinc exists at room temperature or a higher temperature than its melting point.

11. Zinc Van der Waals radius

Van der Waal’s radius is the imaginary measurement between two atoms where they are not bound ionically or covalently. Let us find Van der Waal’s radius of Zinc.

The Van der Waal’s radius of the Zinc molecule is 139 pm because Zn has 4s and a filled 3d orbital so it has a very poor screening effect. For this reason, the nucleus attraction force for the outermost orbital increases, and it decreases the radius.

  • Van der Waal’s radius is calculated by the mathematical formula considering the distance between two atoms, where atoms are spherical in shape.
  • Van der Waal’s radius is, Rv = dA-A / 2
  • Where Rstands for Van Waal’s radius of the molecule of spherical shape
  • dA-A is the distance between two adjacent spheres of the atomic molecule or the summation of a radius of two atoms.

12. Zinc ionic radius

The summation of cation and anion is called the ionic radius of the element. Let us find the ionic radius of Zinc.

The ionic radius of Zinc is 139 pm which is the same as the covalent radius because for Zinc the cation and anion are the same and it is not an ionic molecule. Rather, it forms by the covalent interaction between two Zinc atoms.

13. Zinc isotopes

Elements having the same number of electrons but different mass numbers are called isotopes of the original element. Let us discuss the isotopes of Zinc.

Zinc has 39 isotopes based on their neutron number which are listed below:

  • 54Zn
  • 55Zn
  • 56Zn
  • 57Zn
  • 58Zn
  • 59Zn
  • 60Zn
  • 61Zn
  • 61m1Zn
  • 61m2Zn
  • 61m3Zn
  • 62Zn
  • 63Zn
  • 64Zn
  • 65Zn
  • 65mZn
  • 66Zn
  • 67Zn
  • 68Zn
  • 69Zn
  • 69mZn
  • 70Zn
  • 71Zn
  • 71mZn
  • 72Zn
  • 73Zn
  • 73m1Zn
  • 73m2Zn
  • 74Zn
  • 75Zn
  • 76Zn
  • 77Zn
  • 77mZn
  • 78Zn
  • 78mZn
  • 79Zn
  • 80Zn
  • 81Zn
  • 82Zn
  • 83Zn

Stable isotopes are discussed in the below section among 39 isotopes of Zinc:

No. of
65ZnSynthetic244 dε, γ35
69ZnSynthetic56 minsβ39
69mZnSynthetic13.8 hrsβ39
71ZnSynthetic2.4 minsβ41
71mZnSynthetic4 hrsβ41
72ZnSynthetic46.5 hrsβ42
Isotopes of Zinc

65Zn, 69Zn,69mZn, 71Zn, 71mZn, and 72Zn are radioactive isotopes of Zinc and they can emit radioactive particles. 65Zn, 69Zn,69mZn, 71Zn, 71mZn, and 72Zn are synthetically prepared isotopes of Zinc among all and the rest are naturally obtained.

14. Zinc electronic shell

The shell surrounding the nucleus as per principal quantum number and holding the electrons is called an electronic shell. Let us discuss the electronic shell of Zinc.

The electronic shell distribution of Zinc is 2 2 6 2 6 10 2 because it has s, p, and d orbitals around the nucleus. Since it has more than 18 electrons and to arrange 30 electrons, it needs 1s,2s,2p,3s,3p,3d,4s, and orbitals.

15. Zinc electron configurations

The electronic configuration is an arrangement of the electrons in available orbital by considering Hund’s rule. Let us discuss the electronic configuration of the Zinc.

The electronic configuration of Zinc is 1s22s22p63s23p3d104s2 because it has 30 electrons and those electrons should be placed to the nearest orbital of the nucleus s, p, and d orbitals and for the 1st,2nd, 3rd and 4th orbitals.

  • Due to exchange energy, electrons enter first in 4s orbital then 3d.
  • Where the first number stands for the principal quantum number
  • The letter is for orbital and the suffix number is the number of electrons.
  • But many elements have more principal quantum numbers depending on the number of electrons.
  • Ar has 18 electrons, so the remaining electrons are present after the noble gas configuration.
  • So, it is denoted as [Ar]4s23d10.

16. Zinc energy of first ionization

First I.E. is the energy required for the removal of an electron from the valence orbital of its zero oxidation state. Let us predict the first ionization of Zinc.

The first ionization value for Zn is 906.4 KJ/mol because the electron was removed from the filled 4s orbital, due to lower shielding . The energy required to remove an electron from 4s is lesser than other orbital of Zn. But it required much more energy than expected.

17. Zinc energy of second ionization

The second I.E. is the energy required for the removal of one electron from the available orbital from the +1 oxidation state. Let us see the second ionization energy of Zinc.

The 2nd ionization energy of Zinc is 1733 KJ/mol because, in the 2nd ionization, electrons are removed from the half-filled 4s orbital. When an electron is removed from a half-filled orbital, it needs more energy, and also +1 is the stable state for Zn. Therefore, the 2nd ionization energy is very high than 1st.

18. Zinc energy of third ionization

Removal of the third electron from the outermost or pre-ultimate orbital of an element having a +2 oxidation state is the third I.E. Let us predict the third I.E. of Zinc.

The third ionization energy for Zn is 3833 KJ/mol becasue

  • Removing electrons from a filled orbital always require much more energy than expected because stability is lost.
  •  Electrons are removed from a filled 3d orbital due to exchange energy.
  • 3d orbital has a poor shielding effect, so it can shield the outer electron from the nucleus very poor.
  •  For this reason, the nucleus attraction force on the outermost electron will be increased and removal of the electron require much higher energy.

19. Zinc oxidation states

During bond formation, the charge that appears on the element is called the oxidation state. Let us predict the oxidation state of Zinc.

The stable oxidation state of Zinc is +2 because it has two electrons in the s orbital. When the electron is removed, Zn has filled 3d orbital and gives some extra stability due to zero exchange energy. Therefore, it has a +2 stable oxidation state.

20. Zinc CAS number

CAS number or CAS registration for any element is used to identify the unique element. Let us know the CAS number of the Zinc.

The CAS number of the Zinc molecule is 7440-66-6, which is given by the chemical abstracts service.

21. Zinc Chem Spider ID

Chem Spider ID is the particular number given to a particular element by the Royal Society of Science to identify its character. Let us discuss it for Zinc.

The Chem Spider ID for Zinc is 29723. By using this number, we can evaluate all the chemical data related to the Zinc atom. Like the CAS number, it is also different for all elements.

22. Zinc allotropic forms

Allotropes are elements or molecules with a similar chemical properties but different physical properties. Let us discuss the allotropic form of Zinc.

Zinc has no allotropic forms because it does not show catenation properties like carbon. It is just borderline transition metal.

23. Zinc chemical classification

Based on the chemical reactivity and nature, the elements are classified into some special class. Let us know the chemical classification of Zinc.

Zinc is classified into the following categories:

  • Zn is a lighter transition metal element
  • Zn is a reducing agent
  • Zn is also classified as reactive based on the reaction tendency towards carbonyl.
  • Zn is more brittle and carries electricity as per electrical conductance.

24. Zinc state at room temperature

The physical state of an atom is the state at which an element exists at room temperature and standard pressure. Let us predict the state of Zn at room temperature.

Zinc exists in a solid state at room temperature because it has higher Van der Waal interaction. In the crystal form, it adopts hexagonal close-packed structure so the atoms exist very close to each other. The randomness of the atom is very high at room temperature.

The solid state of Zinc can be changed to liquid at a very low temperature, where the randomness will be decreased for the Zinc atom.

25. Is Zinc paramagnetic?

Paramagnetism is the tendency of magnetization in the direction of the magnetic field. Let us see whether Zinc is paramagnetic or not.

Zinc is not paramagnetic, instead, it is diamagnetic in nature due to the presence of one paired electron in its 4s orbital and all the electrons in its 3d orbital are also paired form. After the first ionization, Zn+ is paramagnetic in nature because there will be one unpaired electron for the 4s orbital.


Zn is a borderline transition element, due to its higher reduction potential it can be used in a galvanic cell. Also, due to its reducing tendency, it can be used as a reducing agent in many organic reactions. It can form amphoteric oxide.

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