Tellurium has a total of six valence electrons. On the periodic table, tellurium sits in the sixth row below selenium. Tellurium's properties are intermediate between those of metals and nonmetals, making it a metalloid.
Having six valence electrons, tellurium tends to hold on to its electrons rather tightly. Tellurium, like every other element, wants to fill its outermost energy level with electrons. In most cases, tellurium becomes an electron acceptor because taking two electrons from one atom is easier than giving six electrons to another.
Tellurium belongs to the oxygen family, also called the chalcogens. This element is shiny like a metal and can exist by itself in nature; however, tellurium is more often found combined with metals such as gold and copper. In industry, tellurium can be used in solar panels and computer chips.