Beryllium and Iodine Ionic Compound

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Beryllium and iodine are members of Group 17 in the periodic table. They have similar chemical properties and have the same number of electrons in the valence shell. When they combine to form an ion, one of them gains an electron to make the ion more stable.

In a similar way, chlorine loses an electron to form a cation. The resulting ion is called KCl. Its valence shell consists of a 2s and 3p orbital. Its ionization potential is low, but it displaces ions that are already formed.

Ionic compounds contain positively and negatively charged ions (the cations) that are held together by strong electrostatic forces. These substances form hard crystalline solids that are resistant to evaporation and are sometimes used as “salt” in melting ice on roads and sidewalks during winter.

Covalent compounds contain a group of atoms that are held together by strong intramolecular chemical bonds. These compounds usually have a specific empirical formula that indicates the relative numbers of elements in the compound, reduced to the lowest whole number.

The most common ionic compounds, such as Na+ and Cl-, have an empirical formula that indicates the number of cations to anions. The cations and anions must be of equal magnitude to cancel each other electrically.

A covalent compound may have an empirical formula that indicates the number of molecules that are present, but these are more difficult to find. Most covalent compounds consist of a single molecule, but some covalent compounds occur as hydrates, which are mixtures of loosely bound water molecules.