5. Gain and Loss of Electrons   Previous PageNext Page
       Basic Oxides: Li2O

The lithium ions in play a passive role, doing nothing more than counter-balancing the negative charges of the ions in the crystal, or the ions in the basic solution (see previous page). ions are hydrated by four water molecules, as mentioned previously.

If we evaporate the basic solution obtained from to dryness, crystals of lithium hydroxide (LiOH) are obtained, which are made up of and ions. Extra heating in a dry environment is required to drive water molecules off and to reconvert the lithium hydroxide crystals to lithium oxide:

The behavior of lithium and its basic oxide that we have just seen is typical of metals in general. Although lithium stands alone in its basic behavior among the second-shell elements, metals and metal hydroxides are very important among the heavier elements.



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