Q:

What are some examples of ductile metals?

A:

Gold and platinum are the most ductile metals on the periodic table of elements. Metals like copper, iron, nickel, manganese, silver, iridium, osmium, tungsten, tantalum, hafnium, rhenium, tin and zirconium can be drawn into very long wires. An ounce of gold can be drawn into a wire 50 miles long.

Metals are ductile because their atomic structure readily shares electrons between nuclei. The outer electrons of metals are constantly flowing across the surface and rolling over each other. As a result, the metal can be drawn into new shapes while maintaining the metallic bonds between atoms. Small amounts of metals can be drawn into long wires.


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