# Electron Configuration and

Chemical Periodicity

GENERAL CHEMISTRY
LECTURE 8
Electron configuration is the distribution of electrons of an
atom (or molecule) in atomic orbital (or molecular orbital).
a. How do we place electrons in an orbital?
b. How do we arrange the orbitals in an atom?
Writing Electronic Configuration

3d - ___ ___ ___ ___ ___

z y x
p p p
2 2 2
z y x
xz yz xy
d d d d d

1s
2

2p
6

3d
10

A. How do we place electrons in an orbital?
 Only a maximum of 2 electrons per orbital
 For degenerate orbitals, place the electrons singly
before pairing (Hund’s Rule)
1s - ___
2p - ___ ___ ___
Writing Electronic Configuration

* However, this scheme is not always accurate
* The arrangement of orbitals is based on calculated energies
from Hψ = Eψ
B. How do we arrange the orbitals in an atom?
Orbitals are arranged in increasing energy
↑n value, ↑energy
For same n value: s < p < d < f
Writing Electronic Configuration

Order for filling energy sublevels
with electrons
Order for filling energy sublevels
with electrons
Aufbau principle
Electrons occupy orbitals in a
way that minimizes the energy
of the atom.
Electron fills up the lowest
energy orbital available
Ground-state electronic
configuration

Electron Configuration and
Chemical Periodicity

GENERAL CHEMISTRY
LECTURE 8
1. Shorthand notation:
n l
#
of electrons in the sublevel
as s, p, d, f
2. Orbital diagram:
C (Z=6):
C (Z=6):
Writing Electronic Configuration

1s
2
2s
2
2p
2

Example: Write the electronic configuration of the following
elements:
O (Z=8): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
4

1s 2s 2p
1.
Writing Electronic Configuration

Example: Write the electronic configuration of the following
elements:
Writing Electronic Configuration

Al (Z=13):
1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
2. 3s
2
3p
1

1s 2s 2p 3s 3p
Write a set of quantum numbers for the third electron and
a set for the eighth electron of the F atom.
F (Z=9)

1s 2s 2p
Third electron:
n = l = m
l
= m
s
= 2 0 0 +
1

2

Determining Quantum Numbers from Orbital Diagrams
Eighth electron:
n = l = m
l
= m
s
= 2 1 -1 -
1

2

-1 +1 0
3. Condensed electron configuration
Al (Z=13): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
1

[Ne] 3s
2
3p
1

S (Z=16):
[Ne] 3s
2
3p
4

1.
Example: Write the condensed electronic configuration of the
following :
1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
4

Writing Electronic Configuration

Mo (Z = 42):
2.
1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
2
3d
10
4p
6
5s
1
4d
5

[Kr] 5s
1
4d
5

Elements with d-orbitals
The ns sublevel fills before the (n-1)d sublevel
How about the transition metals?
Writing Electronic Configuration

* There is special stability associated with half-filled orbitals
Cr (Z=24): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
2

V (Z=23): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
2
3d
3

3d
4

1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
1
3d
5

1s 2s 2p 3s 3p 4s 3d
[Ar] 4s
1
3d
5

Cr (Z=24):
Cr (Z=24):
Electronic Configuration of Some Transition Metals

Cu (Z=29): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
2

Ni (Z=28): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
2
3d
8

3d
9

1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
1
3d
10

* There is special stability associated with completely filled orbitals
1s 2s 2p 3s 3p 4s 3d
[Ar] 4s
1
3d
10

Cu (Z=29):
Cu (Z=29):
Electronic Configuration of Some Transition Metals

Exercise 1 Determining Electron Configuration
1. Give the full and condensed electron configurations of the
following elements.
(a) Mo (Z = 42) (b) Pb (Z = 82)
(a) Mo (Z = 42)
[Kr] 5s
1
4d
5
condensed configuration:
full configuration: 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
2
3d
10
4p
6
5s
1
4d
5

Exercise 1 Determining Electron Configuration
(b) Pb (Z = 82)
[Xe] 6s
2
4f
14
5d
10
6p
2

full configuration: 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
2
3d
10
4p
6
5s
2
4d
10

condensed configuration:
5p
6
6s
2
4f
14
5d
10
6p
2

1. Write the expanded electronic configuration of silver
(Z=47) 2 pts
2. Write the condensed electron configuration of bromine.
(Z=35) 2 pts
3. Write the quantum numbers for the last entering
electron of Mg. 2 pts
Bonus: Write the quantum numbers for the last entering
electron of Mg
2+
. 2 pts
Quiz
The Periodic table
Alkali Metals
Alkaline Earths
Transition Metals
Halogens
Noble Gases
Lanthanides and Actinides
Main Group
Main Group
Group (Columns)
Period (Rows)
The Periodic Table

The period number is the n value of the
highest energy level.
The Periodic Table

The period number is the n value of the highest energy level.
Ni (Z=28): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
6
4s
2
3d
8

Period number?
4
S (Z=16): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
4

Period number?
3
Group (Columns)
Period (Rows)
The Periodic Table

The group number is equal to the number
of outer or valence electrons.
The Periodic Table

Elements in the same group have the same chemical properties
The group number is equal to the number of outer or valence
electrons.
The valence electrons are those electrons in the highest energy level
and they are involved in forming compounds.
N (Z=7) 1s
2
2s
2
2p
3

Example:
Group 5
P (Z=15) 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
3s
2
3p
3

The inner electrons are those electrons in the lower energy levels.
The relation between orbital filling and the periodic table.
Mg (Z =12): [Ne] 3s
2

[Kr] 5s
2
4d
3
Nb (Z = 41):
[Ar] 4s
2
3d
10

Ga (Z = 31): 4p
1
The Periodic Trends

All physical and chemical properties of the elements is based on the
electron configurations of their atoms.
Atomic Size (Ionic Size)
Ionization energy
Electron Affinity
Trends in Atomic Size

1. Change in n The higher the n value (energy level) the
larger the atom.
The n value increases down a group.
Thus atomic size increase down a group
I
n
c
r
e
a
s
e

Nuclear Charge, Z
Moving across a period, each
element has an increased nuclear
charge and the electrons are going
into the same shell (2s and 2p or 3s
and 3p, etc.).
Effective Nuclear Charge, Zeff
Screen of electron charge
from 10 core electrons
(-)
(-)
(12+)
Inner electrons block the
nuclear charge more effectively
than outer electrons.
Trends in Atomic Size

2. Change in Zeff
>
SHIELDING EFFECT
Trends in Atomic Size

2. Change in Zeff The higher the effective nuclear charge (Zeff),
the smaller the atom.
The Zeff increases from left to right.
Thus atomic size decreases from left to right.
Increase
Screen of electron charge
from 10 core electrons
(-)
(-)
(12+)
Exercise 2 Ranking Elements by Atomic Size
SOLUTION:
2. Rank each set of main group elements in order of decreasing
atomic size:
(a) Ca, Mg, Sr (b) K, Ga, Ca (c) Br, Rb, Kr (d) Sr, Ca, Rb
(a) Sr > Ca > Mg
(b) K > Ca > Ga
(c) Rb > Br > Kr
(d) Rb > Sr > Ca
Trends in Ionic Radius

Cations are smaller than the atoms from which they are
formed.
Trends in Ionic Radius

Anions are larger than the atoms from which they are
formed.
For isoelectronic cations, the more positive the ionic
charge, the smaller the ionic radius.
For isoelectronic anions, the more negative the charge, the
larger the ionic radius.
Trends in Ionic Radius

ISOELECTRONIC: Ions (or atoms) with the same electronic
configuration
Trends in Ionic Radius

Example:
Ne (Z=10): 1s
2
2s
2
2p
6

Na (Z=11)  Na
+
+ e
1s
2
2s
2
2p
6

Mg
2+
:

1s
2
2s
2
2p
6

1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
2s
1

Ne > Na
+
> Mg
2+
Ionic vs. atomic radii.
N
3-
> O
2-
> F
-
> Na
+
> Mg
2+
> Al
3+
Exercise No. 3
Ranking Ions by Size
3. Rank each set of ions in order of decreasing size, and explain
(a) Ca
2+
, Sr
2+
, Mg
2+
(b) K
+
, S
2-
, Cl
-
(c) Au
+
, Au
3+

Sr
2+
> Ca
2+
> Mg
2+
S
2-
> Cl
-
> K
+

Au
+
> Au
3+

(a)
(b)
(c)
Ionization energies decrease as atomic radii increase.
Ionization Energy

The energy required (in kJ) for the complete removal of 1 mol
of electrons from 1 mol of gaseous atoms or ions.
Atom (g)  ion
+
(g) + e
-
IE > 0
Mg
+
(g) → Mg
2+
(g) + e
-
IE
2
= 1451 kJ
Na (g) + 496 kJ/mol  Na
+
(g)+ e
-
Example:
First ionization energies as a function of atomic number

First ionization energies as a function of atomic number
I
1
(Mg) vs. I
1
(Al)
3s 3p
3s 3p
Mg
Al
I
1
(P) vs. I
1
(S)
3s 3p
P
S
3s 3p
The first three ionization energies of beryllium (in MJ/mol).
Mg (g) → Mg
+
(g) + e
-
I
1
= 738 kJ

Mg
+
(g) → Mg
2+
(g) + e
-
I
2
= 1451 kJ
IE
1
< IE
2
< IE
3
Exercise No. 4 Ranking Elements by First Ionization Energy
4. Using the periodic table only, rank the elements in each of
the following sets in order of decreasing IE
1
:
(a) Kr, He, Ar
(b) Sb, Te, Sn
(c) K, Ca, Rb
(d) I, Xe, Cs
(a) He > Ar > Kr
(b) Te > Sb > Sn
(c) Ca > K > Rb
(d) Xe > I > Cs
F(g) + e
-
→ F
-
(g) EA = -328 kJ

F(1s
2
2s
2
2p
5
) + e
-
→ F
-
(1s
2
2s
2
2p
6
)
Li(g) + e
-
→ Li
-
(g) EA = -59.6 kJ

Electron Affinity

Electron affinity is the amount of energy released when
an electron is added to an isolated gaseous atom to form
an ion with a 1- charge.
Atom (g) + e
-
 ion
-
(g) EA
1
<0

Example:
Electron affinities of main-group elements
Second Electron Affinities
O(g) + e
-
→ O
-
(g) EA = -141 kJ

O
-
(g) + e
-
→ O
2-
(g) EA = +744 kJ

Metals and Nonmetals
Metallic behavior
• Diamagnetic atoms or ions:
– All e
-
are paired.
– Weakly repelled by a magnetic field.
• Paramagnetic atoms or ions:
– Unpaired e
-
.
– Attracted to an external magnetic field.
Magnetic Properties

Paramagnetic

Exercise No. 5
Writing Electron Configurations and Predicting Magnetic
Behavior of Transition Metal Ions
SOLUTION:
5. Use condensed electron configurations to write the reaction for
the formation of each transition metal ion, and predict whether the
ion is paramagnetic.
(a) Mn
2+
(Z = 25) (b) Cr
3+
(Z = 24) (c) Hg
2+
(Z = 80)
paramagnetic
(a) Mn
2+
(Z = 25)
Mn ([Ar] 4s
2
3d
5
) Mn
2+
([Ar] 3d
5
) + 2e
-

paramagnetic
paramagnetic
(b) Cr
3+
(Z = 24)
paramagnetic
Cr ([Ar] 4s
1
3d
5
) Cr
3+
([Ar] 3d
3
) + 3e
-

SOLUTION:
(c) Hg
2+
(Z = 80)

(diamagnetic)
Hg ([Xe] 6s
2
4f
14
5d
10
) Hg
2+
([Xe] 4f
14
5d
10
) + 2e
-
(diamagnetic)
Exercise No. 5
Writing Electron Configurations and Predicting Magnetic
Behavior of Transition Metal Ions
Trends in three atomic
properties.
Periodic Properties of the Elements
6. Identify the element described in each of the following:

a. Lowest IE1 in Period 5
b. Most metallic element
c. Period 4 element with filled outer orbital
d. Period 3 element whose 2- ion is isoelectronic with Ar
e. Period 4 transition element that forms 3+ diamagnetic ion.
(1 pt each)

Exercise No. 6
Summary

Write the electron configuration of atoms and ions
Predict the trends of atoms (ions) using the periodic table
Atomic Size ( and Ionic size)
Ionization Energy
Electron Affinity
Determine the magnetic properties of atoms
Diamagnetic
Paramagnetic
Review
1. For the following groups of elements select the one
that has the property noted: 1.5 pts each
a. The largest atom: Mg, Mn, Mo, Ba, Bi, Br
b. The lowest first ionization energy: B, Sr, Al, Br, Mg, Pb
c. The most negative electron affinity: As, B, Cl, K, Mg, S
d. The largest unpaired electrons: F, N, S
2-
, Mg
2+
, Sc
3+
,
Ti
3+
2. Arrange the following isoelectronic compounds in order
of increasing radius: Rb
+
, Y
3+
, Br
-
, Kr, Sr
2+
,Se
2-
2 pts