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First and Second Ionization Energy for Mg and Na

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The first ionization energy for Mg (738 kJ/mol) is higher than that for Na (469 kJ/mol) but the second ionization energy for Na (4562 kJ/mol) is much larger than that for Mg (1451 kJ/mol). Explain this observation.

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Solution Summary

In this solution the discrepancy between the first and second ionization energy trend for magnesium and sodium is explained based on the electron configuration of both elements. It provides a step-by-step analysis of the questions, which reveals the trends that generally occur among elements in the seam period of the periodic table.

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In order to address this problem, we'll need to know the electron configuration of the two samples being compared. The electron configurations are:
For Mg: 1s22s22p63s2
For Na: 1s22s22p63s1

The configuration shows how the electrons are arranged in the element. Mg has twelve electrons whereas Na has eleven as shown on the periodic table, represented as superscripts on the electron configurations. Looking at the electron configuration closely, both ...

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