Metals & Metallic Bonds


Metallic bonds are one of the 3 main types of intermolecular forces, along with ionic bonds and covalent bonds. Metals are shiny, malleable, ductile, and good conductors of heat and electricity. In this video we explain the connection between the nature of metallic bonds and these typical features.

You can usually recognize a metal by certain typical features. Metals are:

  • shiny
  • malleable
  • ductile
  • good conductors of heat and electricity

To understand why metals behave the way they do, and the nature of metallic bonds, it helps to understand their structure. Metals are made up of a lattice of positive ions held in a crystalline solid shape, surrounded by a mobile “sea” of electrons that flow freely around the positive charges. The relative weakness of metallic bonds compared to other intramolecular forces like ionic bonds or covalent bonds makes more sense when you consider the free flow of electrons.

In this video, we explain the connection between the behavior of metals and their structure, with special emphasis on the fluid-like flow of electrons. Animations showing the underlying structure of metals and how they behave while they are hammered or pulled into wires makes these concepts much more clear.

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Video: Metals and Metallic Bonds

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