Q:

On the periodic table, what are the rows called?

A:

Quick Answer

The horizontal rows on the periodic table of the elements are called periods. Every element in a period has the same number of atomic orbitals. For instance, hydrogen and helium are in the first period, so they both have electrons in one orbital.

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Full Answer

The columns on the table divide the elements into groups with the same number of electrons in their outer shells. These electrons, called valence electrons, cause them to share chemical properties. For example, noble gases have full valence shells, so they are unreactive, and halogens, such as fluorine and chlorine, react vigorously with alkali metals, such as sodium and potassium.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are the horizontal rows of the periodic table called?

    A:

    On the periodic table, the seven horizontal rows are called periods. On the left-hand side of the periodic table, the row numbers are given as one through seven. Moving across a period from left to right, the atomic number of the elements increases.

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  • Q:

    Why is the periodic table useful?

    A:

    The periodic table is useful because it identifies and arranges all known elements in an informative manner. Elements are arranged into periods and families. The elements in each family or period may have similar or dissimilar physical and chemical properties.

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  • Q:

    How is the periodic table organized?

    A:

    The elements in the periodic table are organized by their atomic numbers, their electron configurations and the recurring properties found in them. Elements are arranged in blocks, with elements found in that block all containing consistent properties. For instance, all alkali metals are highly reactive, and all noble gases are inert, meaning they cannot react with other elements under normal conditions.

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  • Q:

    How did the periodic table get its name?

    A:

    The periodic table got its name from the way the elements are arranged in rows, which are called periods. The columns of the table are called groups, some of which have specific names, such as the noble gases and the halogens.

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