Describe the Formation of Both Positive & Negative Ions

Ions are formed when electrons are gained or lost through ionization energy.
••• starnge image by Sergey Tokarev from Fotolia.com

Atoms are comprised of protons, neutrons and electrons. Protons carry a positive charge, neutrons carry a neutral charge and the electrons, a negative charge. The electrons form an outer ring around the nucleus of the atom. Positive and negative ions of certain elements can be created depending on the number of electrons in their structure.

Ionization Energy

Ionization energy breaks the bonds between the electrons and the protons in the atom. Certain metals and gases often have eight electrons in a ring around the nucleus of the atom. Elements with more or less than eight electrons have weaker or stronger bonds which ionization energy can affect.

Positive Ionization

Positive ionization occurs when a gas or metal loses an electron. For example, the element sodium has an atomic number of eleven, with 11 protons and 11 electrons. It has one electron present in its outer ring. This one electron does not have strong bonds compared with the other electrons in the atom. Therefore, ionization energy can pull this electron away from the atom, resulting in a loss of one negative charge, which creates a positive ion.

Negative Ionization

If an element pulls away an electron from another atom, it gains an electron, which is a negative charge. Therefore, the element becomes a negative ion. For example, the gas fluorine has seven electrons in its outer ring. If ionization energy pulls away an electron from another atom, it will complete its outer ring of eight electrons, but gain a negative charge.

Related Articles

Fluorine School Projects
Why Do Most Atoms Form Chemical Bonds?
How to Find Out If an Element Is an Ion
What Does It Tell You if Iron Has an Atomic Number...
What Are the Elements of Uranus?
Relationship Between the Atomic Number and the Chemical...
Characteristics of Aquatic Plants
What Are the Two Major Components of an Atom?
Covalent Vs. Hydrogen Bonds
How to Find the Mass Number of Bromine With 46 Neutrons
Difference Between a Halogen & a Halide
A List of Three Properties of Ionic Compounds
How to Calculate a Fraction Covalent
Definition of Molecular Bonds
Types of Bonding in Crystals
Which Layer of the Earth's Crust Contains the Highest...
How to Calculate Valence
What Is the Gas Used in Neon Signs that Produces a...
What Elements Make Up the Air We Breathe?
How Many Protons Does Calcium Have?