# Which metal is easier to ionize, lithium or strontium?

Aug 3, 2017

As a scientist you need to look at the numbers, i.e. consider the ionization energies........

#### Explanation:

And these are listed for most metals........

$L i \left(g\right) + \Delta \rightarrow L {i}^{+} \left(g\right) + {e}^{-}$ ;DeltaH^@=520.2*kJ*mol^-1

$S r \left(g\right) + \Delta \rightarrow S {r}^{+} \left(g\right) + {e}^{-}$ ;DeltaH^@=549.5*kJ*mol^-1

I got the numbers from my inorganic text......

So on this basis, energetically, it is easier to form $L {i}^{+}$. Of course, ionization energy DECREASES down a Group (i.e. the distance of the valence electron from the nucleus increases), but INCREASES across a Period ($Z ,$ $\text{the atomic number}$, becomes larger). And so in this instance, we compare apples and oranges.