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MHT-CET : Chemistry Entrance Exam

MHT - CET : Chemistry - Fluorine and Hydrogen Fluoride Know More

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Characteristics of Halogens

  • Oxidation States
    The electronic configuration of halogens is ns2, np5. They require one electron to complete their octet. Thus, they all show
    -1 oxidation state. They also show +1 oxidation state, if the combining element is more electronegative than the halogen. Fluorine has the smallest atomic size, is highly electronegative and does not have any vacant d-orbitals. Hence, it does not show positive oxidation states. The other halogen atoms show varied oxidation states, -1, +1, +3, +5 and +7. This is because they have vacant d-orbitals in their valence shells. The s- and p-electrons present in the outer shells can be easily promoted to these vacant d-orbitals.
  • Colour
    Halogens appear coloured as they absorb visible light, which causes excitation of the outer electrons to higher energy levels. Fluorine has a small atomic size, and therefore, absorbs violet light of higher energy. It, therefore, appears pale yellow. Iodine absorbs yellow light of lesser energy, and therefore, appears violet in colour. It is observed that the colour of halogens deepens down the group.

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