How many valence electrons does sulfur(S) have?

The sixteenth element of the periodic table is sulfur. The element of group-16 is sulfur and, its symbol is ‘S’. Sulfur forms bonds through its valence electrons. This article discusses in detail the valence electrons of sulfur(S).

How many electrons and protons does sulfur(S) have?

The nucleus is located in the center of the atom. Protons and neutrons are located in the nucleus. The atomic number of sulfur(S) is 16. The atomic number is the number of protons.

That is, the number of protons in sulfur(S) is sixteen. Electrons equal to protons are located in a circular shell outside the nucleus. That is, a sulfur atom has a total of sixteen electrons.

What are the valence electrons of sulfur(S)?

The second element in group-16 is sulfur(S). The valence electron is the total number of electrons in the last orbit. The total number of electrons in the last shell(orbit) after the electron configuration of sulfur is called the valence electrons of sulfur(S).

valence electrons of sulfur
Valence electrons of sulfur

The valence electrons determine the properties of the element and participate in the formation of bonds. The sixteenth element in the periodic table is sulfur(S). That is, the atom of the sulfur element has a total of sixteen electrons.

The electron configuration of sulfur shows that the last shell(orbit) of sulfur(S) has a total of six electrons. That is, we can easily say that a sulfur(S) atom has six valence electrons. There is an article on this site detailing the electron configuration of sulfur(S), you can read it if you want.

How to determine the valence electron of sulfur(S)?

Now we will know how to easily determine the valence electron of sulfur(S). The valence electron has to be determined by following a few steps. The electron configuration is one of them. It is not possible to determine the valence electron without electron configuration.

Knowing the electron configuration in the right way, it is very easy to determine the valence electrons of all the elements. There is an article published on this site detailing the electron configuration, you can read it if you want. However, this article briefly discusses electron configuration.

Scientist Niels Bohr was the first to give an idea of the atom’s orbit. He provided a model of the atom in 1913. The complete idea of the orbit is given there. The electrons of the atom revolve around the nucleus in a certain circular path. These circular paths are called orbit( shell). These orbits(shell) are expressed by n. [ n = 1,2 3 4 . . .]

K is the name of the first orbit(shell), L is the second, M is the third, N is the name of the fourth orbit(shell). The electron holding capacity of each orbit is 2n2. [Where, n = 1,2 3,4. . .]

Now,

  • n = 1 for K orbit. The electron holding capacity of K orbit is 2n2 = 2 × 12 = 2 electrons.
  • For L orbit, n = 2. The electron holding capacity of the L orbit is 2n2 = 2 × 22 = 8 electrons.
  • n=3 for M orbit. The maximum electron holding capacity in M orbit is 2n2 = 2 × 32 = 18 electrons.
electron configuration
Electron Configuration

In addition to this method, electron configuration can be done through sub-orbits. The German physicist Aufbau first proposed an idea of electron configuration through sub-orbits. The Aufbau method is to do electron configuration through the sub-energy level.

These sub-orbitals are expressed by ‘l’. The Aufbau principle is that the electrons present in the atom will first complete the lowest energy orbital and then gradually continue to complete the higher energy orbital. These orbitals are named s, p, d, f. The electron holding capacity of these orbitals is s = 2, p = 6, d = 10 and f = 14.

However, valence electrons can be easily identified by arranging electrons according to the Bohr principle. Now we will learn how to determine the valence electron of sulfur(S).

Step-1: First we need to know the total number of electrons in the sulfur(S) atom. To know the number of electrons, you need to know the number of protons in sulfur. And to know the number of protons, you need to know the atomic number of the sulfur(S) element.

To know the atomic number we need to take the help of a periodic table. It is necessary to know the atomic number of sulfur elements from the periodic table. The atomic number is the number of protons. And electrons equal to protons are located outside the nucleus.

Position of sulfur(S) in the periodic table
Position of sulfur(S) in the periodic table

That is, we can finally say that there are electrons equal to the atomic number in the sulfur(S) atom. From the periodic table, we see that the atomic number of sulfur(S) is 16. That is, a sulfur atom has a total of sixteen electrons.

Step-2: Step 2 is very important. In this step, the electrons of sulfur(S) have to be arranged. We know that sulfur atoms have a total of sixteen electrons. The electron configuration of sulfur(S) shows that there are two electrons in the K shell, eight in the L shell, and six in the M shell(orbit).

sulfur electron configuration
Sulfur electron configuration

That is, the first shell of sulfur has two electrons, the second shell has eight electrons and the 3rd shell(orbit) has six electrons. The number of electrons per shell of sulfur is 2, 8, 6. The electron configuration of sulfur through the sub-orbit is 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p4.

Step-3: The third step is to diagnose the valence shell(orbit). The last shell after the electron configuration is called the valence shell(orbit). The total number of electrons in a valence shell is called a valence electron.

The electron configuration of sulfur shows that the last shell of sulfur has six electrons. Therefore, the valence electrons of sulfur are six. In this way, the valence electrons of all the elements can be determined.

Determination of the valency of sulfur(S)

The ability of one atom of an element to join another atom during the formation of a molecule is called valency(valence). There are some rules for diagnosing valency. The number of electrons in an unpaired state in the last orbital after the electron configuration of an atom is called the valency(valence) of that element.

There are 3 valences(valence) of sulfur. Respectively- 2, 4, 6. Which is different from other elements. The total number of electrons in the last orbit of sulfur is six. Two electrons are required to fill the last orbit of sulfur. Therefore, the valency of sulfur is 2.

Valency and valence electrons of sulfur
Valency and valence electrons of sulfur(S)

Again, Valence is determined from the electron configuration of the element in the excited state. The electron configuration of sulfur excited state is S*(16) = 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3px1 3py1 3pz1 3dxy1.

Here, sulfur has four unpaired electrons. The number of unpaired electrons in the last orbit of an element is the valency of that element. For this, the valency(valence) of sulfur is 4.

Again, the electron configuration of sulfur excited state is S*(16) = 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s1 3px1 3py1 3pz1 3dxy1 3dyz1. In this case, sulfur has six unpaired electrons. Therefore, the valency(valence) of sulfur is 6.

How many valence electrons does sulfur ion(S2-) have?

After arranging the electrons, it is seen that the last shell of the sulfur(S) atom has six electrons. In this case, the valence electrons of sulfur(S) are six. We know the details about this.

The elements that have 5, 6, or seven electrons in the last shell(orbit) receive the electrons in the last shell during bond formation. The elements that receive electrons and form bonds are called anions. That is, sulfur(S) is an anion element.

S + 2e → S2-

During the formation of sulfur(S) bonds, the last shell receives electrons and turns into sulfur ions(S2-). The electron configuration of sulfur ion(S2-) is 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6.

The electron configuration of sulfur ions shows that sulfur ions have three shells and the 3rd shell has eight electrons. The electron configuration shows that the sulfur ion has acquired the electron configuration of argon.

That is, in this case, the valence of sulfur ions(S2-) is -2. Since the last shell(orbit) of a sulfur ion has 8 electrons, the valence electrons of sulfur ion(S2-) are eight.

Compound formation of sulfur(S)

Sulfur(S)) participates in the formation of bonds through its valence electrons. We know that the valence electrons in sulfur are six. This valence electron participates in the formation of bonds with atoms of other elements. Sulfur(S) atoms form bonds by sharing electrons with hydrogen atoms.

The electron configuration of hydrogen shows that hydrogen has only one electron. Two hydrogen atoms and one sulfur atom make hydrogen sulfide(H2S) compounds by sharing electrons.

H2 + S → H2S (balanced)

As a result, the sulfur(S) atom completes its octave and acquires the electron configuration of argon. On the other hand, hydrogen acquires the electron configuration of helium.

Therefore, one sulfur atom shares electrons with two hydrogen atoms to form the hydrogen sulfide(H2S) compound through a covalent bond. Hydrogen sulfide(H2S) is covalent bonding.

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