# How does atomic structure affect chemical reactions?

Dec 23, 2017

The number of protons determines the number of electrons which in turn forms the electron configurations that drive chemical reactions.

#### Explanation:

It is the structure of the electron configurations that drive chemical reactions. The electrons will freely to move between atoms in order to achieve stability. The movement and rearrangement of electrons are what causes chemical reactions.

The electronic configuration of the valance electron in Sodium is $3 {s}^{1}$ This lone electron achieves stability by moving away from the Sodium nucleus to another nucleus with a high electron negativity. The electron configuration of the valance electrons in Chlorine is $3 {s}^{2} 3 {p}^{5}$. The electrons in this atom achieve stability by attracting another electron to fill the third electron shell.

To predict and understand how atomic structure affect chemical reactions it is helpful to think like an electron. The number of protons determines the number of electrons, which determines the electron configuration. The electron configuration will determine the types of chemical reactions which take place.