Zinc Metal | Properties | Uses | Facts - Elements and Compounds


Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Zinc Metal | Properties | Uses | Facts

Properties Uses and Facts about Zinc Metal

    What is Zinc

    Zinc is a metal, it is classified as a transition metal, and chemically zinc is an element. The atomic weight of zinc is 65.38 AMU, atomic number 30 and symbol Zn. In the Periodic Table, Zinc is located in Group 12, Period 4 and Block (D). Its atom has 30 electrons, 30 protons, 35 neutrons and 4 energy levels. The density of zinc is 7.134 grams per cubic centimeter. Zinc is found in solid state at room temperature. Its melting point is 419.53 °C (787.15 °F) and its boiling point is 907 °C (1665 °F).

    Zinc was discovered by the German chemist Andreas Sigismund Marggraf in 1746.
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    Properties of Zinc Metal

    • Zinc is a lustrous white-blue metal.
    • When exposed to air, zinc reacts with carbon dioxide in the air, forming a layer of zinc carbonate (ZnCO3) over the zinc, a protective layer that protects the zinc from rusting.
    • Zinc is a soft metal.
    • Zinc is a very good conductor of heat.
    • Zinc is a medium conductor of electricity.
    • Zinc is a chemically active metal, so it is not found in pure form in nature.
    • Hydrogen gas is produced when zinc and acid react.
    • Zinc dissolves in both acids and bases.
    • Zinc is a brittle metal at room temperature, it becomes malleable and ductile when heated to a temperature of 110-150 °C.
    • When zinc is ignited, it burns with a blue-green flame and produces zinc-oxide gas.

    Uses of Zinc Metal

    • Zinc is most commonly used for galvanizing iron metal to protect it from rust. In this process, a thin layer of zinc is plated on the objects made of iron, so that they do not rust.
    • Zinc is essential for all living beings, it helps in the formation of many enzymes in our body.
    • Zinc is widely used for die-casting.
    • Zinc is used in dry cell batteries.
    • Zinc is used to make alloys with other metals, the most common alloy being brass, made of zinc and copper.
    • Zinc and lead are mixed to make an alloy called solder, it melts at low temperature, it is used in electrical equipment.
    • Zinc oxide (ZnO) is also used in pharmaceuticals, in the manufacture of paints, inks, beauty products, and batteries.
    • Zinc chloride (ZnCl2) is used to protect wood from insects.
    • Zinc sulfide (ZnS) is used to make luminous paint, fluorescent bulbs, television screens, and X-ray screens.
    • Zinc is used as a catalyst during rubber production.
    • An alloy named Prestal is made by mixing 78% zinc and 22% aluminum. It is as strong as steel, but can be easily molded like plastic.

    Interesting facts about zinc metal

    • Zinc metal is produced through electrolysis of zinc sulfate (ZnSO4).
    • About 33% of the total zinc produced is used for galvanizing.
    • About 2.5 grams of zinc is present in the body of an adult person and we need about 15 milligrams of zinc per day.
    • Zinc is the 24th most abundant element on Earth.
    • The largest production of zinc in the world is done in China.

    Detailed Information on Some other Metals

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