Lithium valence electrons

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Lithium valence electrons
Lithium valence electrons | Image: Learnool

Lithium, an alkali metal, has 1 valence electron. The valence electrons of lithium can be found using two methods – from its position on the periodic table or from its electron configuration.


Using periodic table

Periodic table | Image: Learnool

Get the periodic table having the chemical elements marked on it as mentioned above.

Now mark the location of lithium on the periodic table.

Lithium location marked on periodic table | Image: Learnool

Next, mark the group number of lithium on the periodic table.

Lithium group number marked on periodic table | Image: Learnool

The valence electrons of each main-group element can be determined by the column in which it is located.

(i.e., all group 1 elements have 1 valence electron, all group 2 elements have 2 valence electrons, skip the transition metals… then, all group 13 elements have 3 valence electrons, all group 14 elements have 4 valence electrons, and so on up to group 18 elements)

Since lithium is in group 1, it has 1 valence electron.

Using electron configuration

  • First, write electron configuration of lithium

The electron configuration of lithium is [He] 2s1.

  • Second, find highest energy level in electron configuration
Green colored number represent highest energy level | Image: Learnool

In the above electron configuration, the highest energy level (2) is marked with green color.

  • Finally, count electrons of that energy level
Number circled with green color represent electrons | Image: Learnool

The 2nd energy level contains 2s subshell and it has 1 electron. So lithium has a total of 1 valence electron.

Next: Beryllium valence electrons


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