Talk:Group 12 element

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Good article Group 12 element has been listed as one of the Natural sciences good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Good topic star Group 12 element is the main article in the Group 12 elements series, a good topic. This is identified as among the best series of articles produced by the Wikipedia community. If you can update or improve it, please do so.
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March 22, 2012 Peer review Reviewed
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May 28, 2012 Good topic candidate Promoted
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IUPAC definition for transition metals[edit]

NOTE: This section is transcluded so the widest-possible number of people can comment

I've been auditing the nav images in element articles to fix wrong neutron counts and giving Lu and Lr the lanthanoid and actinoid coloring, respectively. Part way through, I started to review our definitions for element categories to check them against IUPAC's provisional recommendations. See IUPAC Red Book IR-3.6 GROUPS OF ELEMENTS. Turns out that their specific definition for transition metal deviates from ours in a somewhat embarrassing way:

  • IUPAC defines transition metals specifically as being those elements in groups 3 to 11. This excludes the group 12 elements!

ED NOTE: Turns out, that IUPAC's approved recommendations define transition metals as either the set of elements in groups 3 to 12 (our current set-up) or the set of elements from 3 to 11 (the set-up in the below table).

Fixing this results in somewhat modified periodic tables (Note, that the expanded 'Other metal' category includes all the post-transition metals plus aluminium):

Table showing the more IUPAC consistent element categories

So, before I finish my audit and fix of the nav images, I'd like to know if I should fix group 12 to be consistent with the provisional IUPAC definition of transition metals. OR should we wait for IUPAC to come out with the final-updated Red Book (comment period ends at the end of 2008)? I'm putting my audit and update of the nav images on hold until we figure this out. --mav (talk) 17:50, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

I am not sure how many agree to this definition so waiting would be ok. Nergaal (talk) 18:10, 5 October 2008 (UTC)
I just checked one of my college chemistry textbooks and it agrees with IUPAC. If this definition for transition metals is already widespread, then we may not need to wait for IUPAC's final revision of the Red Book. On the other hand, the updated document may impact other parts of the table and / or nav images. I'm simply not sure how or when we should proceed. --mav (talk) 18:18, 5 October 2008 (UTC)
Erm, the comment period ended in 2004, according to the root of the file you quoted. The text approved in 2005 was (p. 51):

The elements (except hydrogen) of groups 1, 2 and 13–18 are designated as main group elements and, except in group 18, the first two elements of each main group are termed typical elements. Optionally, the letters s, p, d and f may be used to distinguish different blocks of elements. For example, the elements of groups 3–12 are the d-block elements. These elements are also commonly referred to as the transition elements, though the elements of group 12 are not always included; the f-block elements are sometimes referred to as the inner transition elements.

As far as I'm aware, there are no new inorganic recommendations planned for four or five years or so (until they get round to sorting out inorganic Preferred IUPAC names). Physchim62 (talk) 18:25, 5 October 2008 (UTC)
Ah - I saw this and assumed it also applied to the inorganic nomenclature. My bad. I also remember something about unfilled d-suborbitals as part of the definition, which also excludes group 12 elements (with a complication with at least one Hg compound). --mav (talk) 18:35, 5 October 2008 (UTC)
Definition of this term has always been a problem- whether to base the classification on chemistry or atom electron configuration. I was taught at school (1942 Sherwood Taylor text book) that the transition metals did not include Cu group and Zn group - only then to be told at university that Cu was a transition metal. IMO we should go with current IUPAC - that definition has been around for at least 40 years (Cotton and Wilkinson 2d edition 1966)- it leaves a little problem of colouring in and explaining the position of Zn group which is neither main group nor transition metal, but is in the d block according to our chart- although the chart conflicts with the definition in the article (sic "..highest energy electron is in a d orbital") which would seem to exclude both copper (3d10 4s1) and zinc (3d10 4s2) - if our list of electron configurations is right. Best of luck.--Axiosaurus (talk) 08:32, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
The current IUPAC definition (quoted above) gives us freedom to include group 12 or not. Let's not forget that Cotton & Wilkinson doesn't class scandium and yttrium as transition metals either, on chemical grounds. Greenwood and Earnshaw agrees with our current classification except for lanthanum and actinium, which they (correctly in my view) class as transition metals. I seem to remember that the edition of Sherwood Taylor that you quote classes thorium and uranium as transition metals and, in the case of thorium ([Rn] 7s2 5d2), a naive or dogmatic application of the electron configuration criterion would force us to do the same! Physchim62 (talk) 08:52, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
IMHO IUPAC does not clearly define the matter, that's why such a long discussion is needed. My experience is very close to the Axiosaurus' one. The first simple definition refers to empty d orbitals at the elemental state whereas at university I was taught that it's more useful to include group 11 (Cu, Ag, Au) as well because they form ions having empty d orbitals - that is the Cotton Wilkinson definition. This is supported by their behaviour, for instance because they can form coloured complex as the other transition metals. I've never heard that the 12th group (Zn, Cd, Hg) can be included in the transition metals because their behaviour, i.e as catalist, is completely different than the others due to their full d shell. Most of my teachers would have marked as a serious mistake. Cotton Wilkinson (III edition, 1972) includes Scandium and Yttrium between the transition metals. Chemical behaviour should prevail as even Mendeleev based and actually built the periodic table on this characteristic. Some authors try to bridge this describing group 3-12 as d block. Please do not be misled by the shape of the periodic table or, worse, by aestetics issues. Chemistry is an experimental science and sometimes cannot be oversimplyfied. --Avogadro-I (talk) 22:46, 24 November 2008 (UTC)

I've always thought that our periodic tables have too many colors and that we could save ourselves a lot of trouble if we got rid of most of them. But I'm afraid I'm in the minority. --Itub (talk) 10:46, 6 October 2008 (UTC)

But the table is so purty with the colors! And we'd have one less thing to argue about discuss - that would be boring. ;) --mav (talk)

Great feedback - thanks for finding the the current recommendations. Looks like IUPAC is giving us some leeway in the definition of transition metals in the approved recommendations. That means that our current table does not conflict with IUPAC. That is all I was worried about. We should therefore leave well-enough alone. We can revisit this if/when IUPAC comes up with a more rigorous definition. But I welcome anybody else to comment just in case we have missed anything. Again - Thank you everybody! --mav (talk) 01:03, 7 October 2008 (UTC)

Yes, my own opinion is that it's one of those debates that creates more heat than useful work! Physchim62 (talk) 01:21, 7 October 2008 (UTC)
And don't forget that Wikipedia:Naming conventions (chemistry) allows us to go againt IUPAC occasionally, when circumstances demand it! Physchim62 (talk) 01:27, 7 October 2008 (UTC)

It looks like I may be getting in here a little late, but I just wanted to note that in post-transition metal, it claims that the IUPAC definition for transition metals is in conflict with it self. Based upon what I've read here, that doesn't seem to be the case any more. I think it needs to be cleaned up to match the above conclusions. --Wizard191 (talk) 02:04, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

Just a note: first time we get the chance, we should try to get rid of the color differenciation between actinoids and lanthanoids. Nergaal (talk) 17:22, 15 October 2008 (UTC)

Why and what would replace it? --mav (talk)
does not add enough information, and within the TMs, the variations in chemistry are larger than those between Ac and Ln's. Any of the two colors used now would be fine, or some random mix of the two too. Nergaal (talk) 15:16, 19 October 2008 (UTC)
The actinides and lanthanides are distinct enough for us to label them as separate element categories. That combined with the lack of consensus on what is an inner transition tells me that we should leave well enough alone. --mav (talk) 01:06, 20 October 2008 (UTC)

Mercury is considered a transition element under both IUPAC definitions now, because the compound HgF4 has been synthesized in 2007, giving Hg a d8 electron configuration. Should this be incorporated in the table and the article? Kumorifox (talk) 13:46, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

Not everyone agrees that mercury is a transition metal due to the observation of HgF4 under exotic conditions. See the article on HgF4 for details. --Itub (talk) 01:12, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Removing suggestion to Merge d-block and Transition metal[edit]

Well I showed up 3 months too late for the fun, but I based on what I read, I am removing the suggestion to merge these two articles. No change in IUPAC recommendations will ever alter Periodic table (by blocks). The blocks must have a number of columns corresponding to the number of electrons that a full subshell can hold. So the d-block must occupy groups 3-12. This is a man-made oversimplification because the chemistry and even the ground state electrons in Periodic_table_(electron_configurations) are messier than the blockiness, but that's ok. Oversimplifications are important because they make reality interesting. "Transition metal" on the other hand, is a convention, not an oversimplification. One bunch of folks call some elements "Transition metals" and another bunch of folks don't, and IUPAC says that's ok. When the most recent IUPAC book says "the elements of group 12 are not always included," they mean not always included in the transition metals. Group 12 has to be in the d-block because if it weren't, then the d-block would only hold 9 columns, meaning 9 electrons maximum in the d-subshell and Kimmie, the cute new 22-year old high-school chemistry teacher, would cry because even the oversimplifications would be too complex to teach, and angry mobs of high school boys who love Kimmie would grab torches and pitchforks and attack IUPAC folks and Wikipedia editors for making Kimmie cry. So that's why d-block and Transition metal should not be merged even though IUPAC says they -can- contain the same elements. By the way, Inner transition element and f-block should also be separate articles for the same reason. Conventions and oversimplifications are very, very different. Flying Jazz (talk) 07:47, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

I agree and I'm glad to see you editing again. :) --mav (talk) 15:40, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Well, if Kimmie is wrong, too bad I say. (^_^) Other than that, I agree they should remain separate articles (though that's probably because I am of the firm opinion that the d-block and the transition metals should be different groups). Double sharp (talk) 04:52, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

A few ideas[edit]

  • Zn is similar with Mg.
  • "not transition elements as the d-shell is full." I thought that both including and excluding from TM is common. MAYBE this question is worth a separate subsection.
  • Make the table in Physical illustration to the text, not the text (just write something)
  • Once again MAYBE an explanation why Hg is liquid will be helpful.
  • History is very short. What I want it to be is Group 3 element#History (of course I wrote it myself), but it's nothing but a point of view. (The article may be helpful at all, you may also check noble gases)
  • Maybe you could note that group 12 was IIB before? Earlier, didn't anyone try to characterize the similarity between the elements (triels or something)?
  • How much Cd and Hg has been made/is made per year?
  • Applications may be enlarged. Aren't there uses for Hg?
  • I ain't sure, but isn't there some microscopic amount of Cd and Hg in humans? Just if there's some of any lanthanide (but Pm), there may be also Cd/Hg traces.
  • "Like in most other d-block groups the abundance in Earth's crust decreases with higher atomic number, and so the zinc is with 65 parts per million (ppm) the most abundant in the group while cadmium with 0.1 ppm and mercury with 0.040 ppm are orders of magnitude less abundant." Hmmm, these numbers say nothing to almost anyone. SO Zn is common, Hg is among rarest of all (right?), and Cd doesn't seem to be very common as well.
  • "While mercury and zinc minerals are found in large enough quantities to be mined, cadmium is too similar to zinc and therefore is always present in small quantities in zinc ores." Wait a minute, Cd is more common than Hg. I guess it's because Cd is similar with Zn, and Hg is separate from them. If I'm right, this'll have to be included.

There may be more, that's what I found after reading this once. All of the above is only my opinion--R8R Gtrs (talk) 10:09, 29 August 2011 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Group 12 element/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Titodutta (talk · contribs) 21:40, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

Let's start

I am starting review. Additional comments are welcome! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 21:40, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

I read the article twice before starting the review process. The article is very well written! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 21:57, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

First read comments[edit]

First things to look for
Basic problems Comment
The article completely lacks reliable sources – see Wikipedia:Verifiability N No problem!
There are cleanup banners that are obviously still valid, including {{cleanup}}, {{wikify}}, {{POV}} N No major problem!
The article is or has been the subject of ongoing or recent, unresolved edit wars N No!
The topic is treated in an obviously non-neutral way – see Wikipedia:Neutral point of view. N No problem

First look assessment: YesY Ok! There is not any "basic problem" in the article, and we can start the review in detail now.

Dead refs[edit]

There are three dead refs in the article. That means, the pages used in reference don't exist now and resulting an HTTP 404 error (page not found). Fix these three references: reference 14, 54, 106! Let me know if you have any question!--Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 22:03, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done Double sharp (talk) 05:59, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
Thanks! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 19:44, 5 April 2012 (UTC)


Rate Attribute Review Comment
1. Well written:
1a. the prose is clear and concise, and the spelling and grammar are correct. This is one of best written articles I have ever read in Wikipedia. The prose is completely clear and concise. --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 21:51, 4 April 2012 (UTC)
1b. it complies with the manual of style guidelines for lead sections, layout, words to watch, fiction, and list incorporation. The article follows MoS guidelines! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 19:43, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
2. Verifiable with no original research:
2a. it contains a list of all references (sources of information), presented in accordance with the layout style guideline. There is no problem with sources. It provides references to all sources of information in the section(s). --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 03:12, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
2b. all in-line citations are from reliable sources, including those for direct quotations, statistics, published opinion, counter-intuitive or controversial statements that are challenged or likely to be challenged, and contentious material relating to living persons—science-based articles should follow the scientific citation guidelines. True! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 19:55, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
2c. it contains no original research. True, there is not any original research! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 03:12, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
3. Broad in its coverage:
3a. it addresses the main aspects of the topic. Yes, the article addresses main aspects of the topic!
3b. it stays focused on the topic without going into unnecessary detail (see summary style). Absolutely! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 21:54, 4 April 2012 (UTC)
4. Neutral: it represents viewpoints fairly and without editorial bias, giving due weight to each. Yes, no problem in WP:NPOV. It represents viewpoints fairly! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message)
5. Stable: it does not change significantly from day to day because of an ongoing edit war or content dispute. I have not seen any recent edit war problem. Pass here too! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 01:47, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
6. Illustrated, if possible, by images:
6a. images are tagged with their copyright status, and valid fair use rationales are provided for non-free content. Images are properly tagged.. --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 19:43, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
6b. images are relevant to the topic, and have suitable captions. True! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 01:47, 5 April 2012 (UTC)
7. Overall assessment. I have read this article multiple times, and I feel currently this is a good article based on Wikipedia:Good article criteria. Congratulations editors! You have done a great team work! --Tito Dutta (Send me a message) 19:55, 5 April 2012 (UTC)

Common structural properties[edit]

The elements 30Zn, 48Cd. 80Hg, and and 112Cn all have the common feature of being the last element of a 10 element (2 + 4 + 4 = 10) so called transition metal series which then is extended by a 6 element (2 + 4 = 6) series to the end of the IUPAC table. This implies the end of the creation of a 10 element structural feature of the atomic nucleus. And this structural feature is related to the fact that it is concerned with the minimum addition of 10 deuterons plus some extra neutrons to the nucleus, with each of the incremental elements being changed by the addition of a single deuteron. — Preceding unsigned comment added by WFPM (talkcontribs) 18:48, 22 November 2012 UTC

Moved from GA review page --Tito Dutta (talk) 19:58, 22 November 2012 (UTC)

The range of the number of excess neutrons required for the stability of the elements of this group is from 4 to 10 for 30Zn, from 10 to 20 for 48Cd, and from 36 to 44 for 80Hg, with the central stability isotope of 80Hg lying on the isotope stability line with the formula A = 3Z - 40 = EE80Hg200, with 23% constituency. There are no stable isotopes of 112Cn, probably due to a high probability of alpha particle emission instability. However a trend line related to a minimum of instability would probably be that involving the existence of a 4n number of extra neutrons and thus being in the range of A = 3Z -40 (at EE112Cn288 with 64 extra neutrons) or A = 3Z - 44 (at EE112Cn292 with 68 extra neutrons). The reported data is only for isotopes up to EO112Cn285 with 61 extra neutrons, and may indicate the inability of the structure to accumulate extra neutrons beyond a maximum number.WFPM (talk) 02:35, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Move discussion in progress[edit]

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