Why does sodium chloride not conduct electricity as a solid but when melted, does conduct electricity?


Solid NaCl consists of a three dimensional array of Na^+ and Cl^-. Even though the ions are present, the ions are not free to move about; i.e., they are held in place by crystal lattice forces that make up the solid. They CAN vibrate, and do, but they are not free to move from one spot to another and that is necessary for electrical conduction to take place. When NaCl melts, however, the crystal lattice is broken down (energy is supplied by the heating device used--bunsen burner or hot plate) and in liquid form the ions ARE free to move from one place to another. Therefore, the ions can conduct electical current from one electrode to another. I hope this is clear to you.

  1. 👍 0
  2. 👎 0
  3. 👁 227
asked by Sean

Respond to this Question

First Name

Your Response

Similar Questions

  1. chemistry

    22. Choose the best description for a solid held together by London forces. A. This substance melts at -30 °C to give a liquid that does not conduct electricity. B. This substance melts at 650 °C and both the solid and liquid

    asked by Kathy R on February 13, 2011
  2. Chemistry

    Regarding conductivity: 1. If a solution has a high conductivity, it indicates that there are a lot of __________________ in solution. [Answer: ions] 2. Pure acetic acid does not conduct electricity, nor does pure water, but a

    asked by . on November 24, 2009
  3. physics

    Can water,air and earth conduct electricity? If yes, then explain how they conduct electricity.

    asked by mikylexes on February 3, 2012
  4. chem

    Are aspirin, starch and dextrose covalent or ionic? Do aspirin and or epsom salt conduct electricity? Any help with these questions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you! I have been told by more than one person that aspirin

    asked by Fidelia on February 1, 2007
  5. chemistry

    I have two solutions of 0.1 Molar. A solution of magnesium chloride and a solution of potassium chloride. I thought that the 0.1 M solution of magnesium chloride would conduct electricity better than a 0.1 M solution of potassium

    asked by charlie on May 11, 2011
  6. Science

    Solid table salt does not conduct electricity. How does dissolving salt in water allow electricity to flow?

    asked by Easton on December 1, 2009
  7. Chemistry (CHEM)

    Can someone explain the electrical conductivity of melted and of aqueous solutions of ionic compounds. An explain it using the characteristics of ionic compounds. ThankS A Whole lot.. In Advance I suggest you go to the site

    asked by Brittany on November 14, 2006
  8. science

    A substance in a solid at room temperature. It is unable to conduct electricity as a solid but can conduct electricity as a liquid. This compound melts at 755 degrees celsius. Would you expect this compound to have ionic bonds,

    asked by JAKE on February 28, 2008
  9. Chemistry

    HCl is a gas at room temperature and does not conduct electricity. Yet when dissolved in water, the solution becomes an excellent conductor. Classify HCl as metallic, ionic, molecular or covalent network, and explain why HCl would

    asked by Morgan on February 25, 2015
  10. Chemistry

    Why do ionic compounds conduct electricity when they are melted or dissolved in water?

    asked by Jennifer on October 25, 2007

More Similar Questions