What Are the Chemical Properties of Zinc?

Some of the atomic chemical properties of the element zinc include a nonbonded atomic radius of 2.01 and covalent radius of 1.20; an unstable electron affinity and electronegativity of 1.65 based on the Pauling scale; and its first eight increasing ionization energies listed at 906.402, 1733.3, 3832.687, 5731.2, 7969.7, 10420, 12929 and 16788 kJ mol-1. Zinc is a transition metallic element.

The atom retains all the properties of an element, and it is considered as its basic fundamental unit. It consists of three main subatomic particles: electrons, protons and neutrons. A nuclide is a type of atom, characterized by a chemical symbol, mass number and atomic number, which is a unique identifier for every element. The atomic number pertains to the number of protons, which is also equivalent to the number of electrons in an uncharged atom. The atomic number determines the chemical properties of the element. The electrons, specifically those located in the outermost shell called valence electrons, are involved in chemical reactions, which exhibit the behavior or reactivity of the atom.

In the periodic table, zinc has the chemical symbol Zn and an atomic number of 30. Its number of electrons per shell is two, eight, 18 and two. The two valence electrons of zinc are responsible for forming bonds with other atoms, which is determined by its electron affinity, electronegativity and ionization energies. Zinc easily reacts with oxygen to create zinc oxide. It also forms alloys with other metallic elements, which serve a variety of industrial purposes.