Introduction to Representative Metals, Metalloids, and Nonmetals

Outline of Representative Metals, Metalloids, and Nonmetals

  • Periodicity
  • Occurrence and Preparation of the Representative Metals
  • Structure and General Properties of the Metalloids
  • Structure and General Properties of the Nonmetals
  • Occurrence, Preparation, and Compounds of Hydrogen
  • Occurrence, Preparation, and Properties of Carbonates
  • Occurrence, Preparation, and Properties of Nitrogen
  • Occurrence, Preparation, and Properties of Phosphorus
  • Occurrence, Preparation, and Compounds of Oxygen
  • Occurrence, Preparation, and Properties of Sulfur
  • Occurrence, Preparation, and Properties of Halogens
  • Occurrence, Preparation, and Properties of the Noble Gases


The development of the periodic table in the mid-1800s came from observations that there was a periodic relationship between the properties of the elements. Chemists, who have an understanding of the variations of these properties, have been able to use this knowledge to solve a wide variety of technical challenges. For example, silicon and other semiconductors form the backbone of modern electronics because of our ability to fine-tune the electrical properties of these materials. This chapter explores important properties of representative metals, metalloids, and nonmetals in the periodic table.

Three photos are shown. The first shows a scientific lab full of equipment in which two people in protective suits are working. The second image shows a man holding a round, reflective disc held inside of a protective, clear container. The third image shows a round disc covered in metallic chips which is behind a protective covering. Figure 1. Purity is extremely important when preparing silicon wafers. Technicians in a cleanroom prepare silicon without impurities (left). The CEO of VLSI Research, Don Hutcheson, shows off a pure silicon wafer (center). A silicon wafer covered in Pentium chips is an enlarged version of the silicon wafers found in many electronics used today (right). (credit middle: modification of work by “Intel Free Press”/Flickr; credit right: modification of work by Naotake Murayama)


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