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Chemistry question I need answered

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posted on Feb, 28 2012 @ 01:50 AM
Why is sulphur non conductive in a liquid or solid state?

Is it anything to do with sulphur not having any delocalized electrons?

posted on Feb, 28 2012 @ 02:04 AM
reply to post by curiousrb

wiki answers says it is due to having a tetrahedral lattice, which agrees with what you said. I'm too tired to look up another source though.
edit on 28-2-2012 by EnlightenIgnorance because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 28 2012 @ 02:25 AM
reply to post by curiousrb

Because sulfur is non-ionic. There's a reason why distilled water doesn't conduct current until you add salt, because the salt ionizes the water molecules, making them conductive.

posted on Feb, 28 2012 @ 05:43 AM
Homework 101 - Ask ATS!

Nice !!!

but it's good to know, since taurine is a sulphate, I'm therefore non conductive. Good thing since I never intent to shock anyone.

(ps Taurine, google it, it's really good for you... but I think over doing it makes you feel sunburnt all the time)

posted on Feb, 28 2012 @ 11:42 AM
I didn't see you'd made a thread on this before I replied to your U2U and since I already sent that before I realised it was probably homework and for the benefit of others, I figure I'll post my reply here as well.

Who on Earth told you that?

But yes, I am a chemist. Sorry I've taken a little while to respond, I don't check this as often as I used to.

The ability to conduct electricity comes down to the ability for a substance to carry and transport electrons. Metallically bonded substances are very good at this because electrons are delocalised across the entire lattice structure of the metal (i.e. they essentially swim around the atoms). Ionically bonded compounds also conduct electricity fairly well (depending on the compound), because in such a system the two components both carry charge and are therefore capable of conducting electricity. For example, when in solution, table salt (NaCl) dissociates into Na+ and Cl- ions. Tap water also contains calcium and magnesium ions, among others, which is why is conducts electricity.

Non-metallic substances and ones that are covalently bonded typically do not posses this property. the reason is simply that they are not very good at it. Sounds stupid, but that's the simple answer. The outer most energy level of metallic atoms contain valence electrons that are very easy to pull off, making the atom positively charged. Electrons are more or less free to move around and this gives it its conductivity.

In its solid state, sulphur exists as a covalently bonded cluster type structure; typically octasulphur, which is simply 8 sulphurs bound together in a ring. The result of the covalently bonded structure of sulphur means that electrons are not free to move around - they are 'trapped' in the bonds that exist between the sulphur atoms. Because of this, sulphur cannot conduct electricity.

What do you mean by liquid state? Native sulphur is solid, so are you referring to a particular compound other than that or are we talking about dissolved sulphur?

Now, I don't know if I've explained that very well. I'm not a physical chemist even in the slightest (synthetic organic chemistry), so I may have come across a bit muddled.

Feel free to ask more questions here if you need, otherwise you could write a thread in a science forum so that your questions get attention by people who know the answer better than I do. *


*Edited this paragraph to remove a link

posted on Feb, 28 2012 @ 10:34 PM
reply to post by mainidh

A quick wikipedia read

Taurine is involved in a number of crucial physiological processes. However, the role of taurine in these processes is not clearly understood and the influence of high taurine doses on these processes is uncertain. A substantial increase in the plasma concentration of growth hormone was reported in some epileptic patients during taurine tolerance testing (oral dose of 50 mg/kg bw/day), suggesting a potential to stimulate the hypothalamus and to modify neuroendocrine function. There is an indication that taurine (2 g/day) has some function in the maintenance and possibly in the induction of psoriasis. It may also be necessary to take into consideration that absorption of taurine from beverages may be more rapid than from foods.[7] A 2003 study by the European Food Safety Authority found no adverse effects for up to 1,000 mg of taurine per kilogram of body weight per day.

Remember they use to say lead was fine to add to petrol and paint.

Doesn't sound great in large doses. But I will have a bit more of a look into it.

posted on Feb, 29 2012 @ 01:48 AM
reply to post by curiousrb

The difference being that lead is not involved in any physiological / metabolic pathways, was not ever intended to be ingested and is a heavy metal, whereas taurine is not a heavy metal, is fine to be consumed and does play important metabolic roles.

But, everything in moderation.
edit on 29-2-2012 by hypervalentiodine because: (no reason given)

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