gcsescience.com                                       3                                       gcsescience.com

The Reactivity Series

The Reaction of Metals with Water.

Potassium, sodium, lithium and calcium react with cold water,
see alkali metals and alkaline earth metals.

Metals in the reactivity series from magnesium to iron
react with steam - H2O(g) but not water - H2O(l).
The reaction forms the metal oxide and hydrogen gas.
You must know the test for hydrogen gas.

magnesium + steam  arrow magnesium oxide   +  hydrogen.
Mg(s)    +    H2O(g)  arrow           MgO(s)         +         H2(g)

aluminium  +  steam    arrow  aluminium oxide  +   hydrogen.
2Al(s)    +    3H2O(g)  arrow            Al2O3(s)      +      3H2(g)

zinc    +    steam         arrow    zinc oxide     +   hydrogen.
Zn(s)   +   H2O(g)       arrow       ZnO(s)         +         H2(g)

iron     +     steam       reversible arrow    iron(III) oxide  +   hydrogen.
2Fe(s)    +    3H2O(g)   reversible arrow           Fe2O3(s)      +      3H2(g)
Note that the reaction between iron and steam is reversible.

Tin, lead, copper, silver, gold and platinum
do not react with water or steam.

back       Links       The Reactivity Series       Revision Questions       next

gcsescience.com    The Periodic Table    Index    Reactivity Series Quiz    gcsescience.com

Home      GCSE Chemistry      GCSE Physics

Copyright © 2015 gcsescience.com. All Rights Reserved.