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Sulfur, do not engulf her; She will make you suffer!

GOAL: Introduce Sulfur (S). Learn the concept of Polymerization.

Sulfur is a sister of Tom-the-Atom from the family of the Non-Metals.  She is the best example to introduce the concept of Polymerization.

She occupies Column 16 (or Group 6A) in the Periodic Table; i.e., she has 6 “hands” or valence electrons; the same that her sister Oxygen.  Sulfur is under Oxygen in the third row of the Periodic Table, indicating she has three shells.  To her right, in the Periodic Table, is Chlorine, from the Family of the Halogens, her cousins.  To her left is Phosphorous, another sister.  She is widely used by Humans.  She has a bright yellow color, and she can have a horrible smell when combined with Hydrogen (H2S).  Bacteria can produce H2S, which has the characteristic odor of rotten eggs.

Sulfur forms a pungent gas when sulfur-containing materials are burned in the air.  Sulfur combines effortlessly with two atoms of Oxygen to create a larger molecule SO2 (Sulfur dioxide), which pollutes our atmosphere.  Sulfur can be toxic and damaging to Humans’ bodies if used in excess.  Sulfur has a characteristic that, when it is heated, it becomes thicker (more viscous) with increasing temperature instead of thinner (less viscous), as do most elements.

We will learn about the meaning of Polymerization.


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