Copper is an element that is used in electrical wires. What is the smallest unit of copper that still maintains the characteristics of copper?

1 Answer
May 14, 2017

Answer:

By definition, for copper #Z=29.......#

Explanation:

So we could oxidize a single atom up to a multi-charged cation.........

#Cu+DeltararrCu^(29+) + 29e^-#

Of course we would need a LOT of energy to do this, and so the equation is (HIGHLY!) physically unreasonable. The ion still has #Z=29# (manifestly), and this is the smallest such copper particle.

Typical oxidation states of copper are #Cu^(+I)#, and #Cu^(+II)#, #"cuprous"# and #"cupric"# ions.