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Chemical Properties of Group 13 Elements

  1. Reaction with Oxygen
    All elements burn in oxygen at high temperatures forming M2O3. The element Tl also forms some Tl2O.
    The reaction of aluminum with oxygen is strongly exothermic.
    2Al(s) + O2(g) Al2O3(s) H° = - 1670 kJ mol-1
    This reaction is known as the thermite reaction. The very strong affinity of aluminum with oxygen is used in the metallurgical extraction of other metals from their oxides.
    3Mn3O4 + 8Al 9Mn + 4Al2O3
    Cr2O3 + 2Al Al2O3 + 2Cr
  2. Reaction with Water
    Aluminium, in principle, can react with water. But the reaction does not continue due to the formation of thin protective layer of Al2O3.
  3. Reactions with Acids and Alkalis
    Aluminium reacts with dilute mineral acids.
    2Al + 6HCl 2Al3+ + 6Cl- + 3H2.
    With concentrated nitric acid, the metal becomes passive due to the formation of protective layer of oxide.
    Aluminium also dissolves in aqeous NaOH indicating that the element is amphoteric.
    2Al + 2NaOH + 6H2O 2NaAlO2 +2H2O + 3H2
                                                       Sodium aluminate

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