Block in periodic table: periodicity

This gives the periodic table block in the standard periodic table in which the element is to be found.

The four blocks are s, p, d, and f. Elements in each block are colour coded in the background graphics, the periodic tables, and the element pages themselves. To see these colours, however, you need browser software with capable of shading the cells in a table. If you do not see these colours, please upgrade your browser software.

Groups 1-2 (except hydrogen) and 13-18 are termed main group elements.

Groups 3-11 are termed transition elements. Transition elements are those whose atoms have an incomplete d-subshell or whose cations have an incomplete d-subshell.

Main group elements in the first two rows of the table are called typical elements.

The first row of the f-block elements are called lanthanoids (or, less desirably, lanthanides. The second row of the f-block elements are called actanoids (or, less desirably, actanides.

The following names for specific groups in the periodic table are in common use:

  • Group 1: alkali metals
  • Group 2: alkaline earth metals
  • Group 11: coinage metals (not an IUPAC approved name)
  • Group 15: pnictogens (not an IUPAC approved name)
  • Group 16: chalcogens
  • Group 17: halogens
  • Group 18: noble gases

In addition, groups may be idenitifed by the first element in each group - so the Group 16 elements is sometimes called the oxygen group.





Literature sources

  1. International Union of Pure & Applied Chemistry: Commission on the Nomeclature of Inorganic Chemistry, Nomenclature of Inorganic Chemistry Recommendations 1990, Ed. G.J. Leigh, Blackwell Science, Oxford, 1990.

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