Asked in Chemistry
Why oxygen is a fairly reactive element while neon is not?
June 08, 2010 4:35AM
It all has to do with the amount of valence electrons in the atom. In oxygen, there are 6 valence electrons. Because the shell is not full, it is essentially 'looking' for 2 more electrons to fill the shell. This means that it can react with other atoms to create the oxygen ion. Neon, on the other hand, is a noble gas that has a full outer shell. It does not need another electron to fill it up.