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Name: Muhammad Akram Group:A

Difference and definition of (free radical and ions( cation & anion ) )

A Free radical is an atom or a group of atoms containing one or more unpaired


electron(s). They are highly reactive due to the presence of an unpaired electron. Free
radicals are very unstable and try to gain the stability by accepting the needed electron.
They react with other chemical compounds by capturing the needed electron. Free
radicals are important intermediates in natural processes. Free radicals are denoted by
a superscript dot to the right.

Examples: H., Cl., HO., H3C.

Long-lived free radicals are sub-divided into three categories: stable radicals, persistent
radicals, and di-radicals.

Stable radicals: The major example for a stable radical is molecular oxygen O 2.
Organic radicals containing conjugated π system can be long lived.

Persistent radicals: They are long lived due to the steric crowding around the radical
center and make them physically difficult to react with another molecule.

Di-radicals: Some molecules have two radical centers, they are called di-radicals.
Molecular oxygen naturally (atmospheric oxygen) exists as a diradical.

Ions are formed when electrons are gained or lost in chemical reactions; they have a
positive (+) or negative (-) charge. Those get a negative charge by accepting an
electron(s) and positive charge by donating electrons for an electron deficiency
molecule or an element. Accepting or donating electrons directly affect the size of the
ion; it changes the molecular size dramatically. An atom or a group of atoms without a
negative or positive charge is called neutral; to become a neutral atom or a molecule,
the number of protons needs to be the same as number of electrons.

Cations (+) ions – often metals since metals lose electrons to become positive (+)
charged (Na+, Ba2+, Ca2+, Al3+)

Anions (-) ions – often nonmetals since nonmetals gain electrons to become negative
(-) charged (Cl–, S2-, O2-, Br–)

Polyatomic ions – units of atoms behaving as one entity (ClO3–, SO42-, PO43-)

Ionic solids – Electrostatic forces hold ions together. Strong ∴ ions held close together
∴ solids.