Phosphorus: Uses And Characteristics With Its Atomic Properties

We elaborate the uses of phosphorus and atomic properties with characteristics. Phosphorus is a colorless, red or silver white chemical element with atomic number 15. Its symbol is P and it belongs to the group of nonmetals and its habitual state in nature is solid. The phosphor is located at position 15 on the periodic table.

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On this page you can discover the chemical properties of phosphorus and information about phosphorus and other elements on the periodic table such as nitrogen, arsenic, silicon or sulfur. You will also learn what phosphorus is for and you will learn what its uses are through its properties associated with phosphorus such as its atomic number or the usual state in which phosphorus can be found.

You will see qualities of phosphorus such as its melting and boiling point, its magnetic properties or what its chemical symbol is. In addition, here you will find information about its atomic properties such as the distribution of electrons in phosphorous atoms and other properties.

For some elements, some of this information is unknown. In these cases we show the properties attributed to them.

Properties of phosphorus

One of the properties of non-metal elements such as phosphorus is for example that non-metal elements are poor conductors of heat and electricity. Phosphorus, like the other non-metal elements, has no luster. Due to their brittleness, nonmetals like phosphorous cannot be flattened to form sheets or stretched to become threads.

The state of phosphorus in its natural form is solid (diamagnetic). Phosphorus is a colorless, red or silver-white chemical element and belongs to the group of nonmetals. The atomic number of phosphorus is 15. The chemical symbol for phosphorus is P. The melting point of phosphorus is 317.3 degrees Kelvin or 45.15 degrees celsius or degrees centigrade. The boiling point of phosphorus is 550 degrees Kelvin or 277.85 degrees Celsius or degrees Celsius.

Phosphorus is a mineral that our body needs for its proper functioning and can be found in food. Through the following link, you can find a list of foods with phosphorous .

Uses of phosphorus

Phosphorus is an important chemical element that has only one stable isotope. If you’ve ever wondered what silicon is for , here is a list of its possible uses:

  • Phosphates are used to make special glass that is used as in sodium lamps .
  • Phosphorus is an essential nutrient for plants, so it is added to fertilizers.
  • In the laboratory, two radioactive phosphorous isotopes can be used as radioactive tracers.
  • Calcium phosphate can be used to make fine porcelain.
  • The match heads are made of phosphorous. Flares and safety matches are also made from phosphorous.
  • White phosphorus is used in incendiary bombs, smoke screens (eg, smoke bombs), and in tracer ammunition.
  • Tributylphosphate, a phosphorous compound, is used to extract uranium . This is called the Purex process.
  • Phosphorus is an important component of DNA and RNA.
  • Phosphorus is used in the production of steel.
  • Sodium tripolyphosphate is used in laundry detergents in some parts of the world. This helps in cleaning the clothes. However, some countries have banned it as it leads to the death of fish when it leaked into waterways.
  • Other phosphorous compounds are used in the manufacture of pesticides, food additives, toothpaste, and fertilizers.

Atomic properties of phosphorus

The atomic mass of an element is determined by the total mass of neutrons and protons that can be found in a single atom belonging to this element. As for the position where to find phosphorus in the periodic table of the elements, phosphorus is in group 15 and period 3. Phosphorus has an atomic mass of 30.9737620 u.

The electronic configuration of the phosphor is [Ne] 3s2 3p3. The electronic configuration of the elements, determines the form in which the electrons are structured in the atoms of an element. The average radius of the phosphor is 100 pm, its atomic radius or Bohr radius is 98 pm, its covalent radius is 106 pm, and its Van der Waals radius is 180 pm. The phosphor has a total of 15 electrons whose distribution is as follows: In the first layer it has 2 electrons, in the second it has 8 electrons and in its third layer it has 5 electrons.

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Phosphorus characteristics

Below you can see a table where the main characteristics of phosphorus are shown.


Chemical symbol P
Atomic number fifteen
Group fifteen
Period 3
Appearance colorless, red or silver white
Block p
Density 1823 kg / m3
Atomic mass 30.9737620 u
Average radius 100 pm
Atomic radio 98
Covalent radius 106 pm
Van der Waals radio 180 pm
Electronic configuration [Ne] 3s2 3p3
Electrons per layer 2, 8, 5
Oxidation states + -3, 1, 5
Oxide slightly acidic
Crystal structure monoclinic
State solid
Melting point 317.3 K
Boiling point 550 K
Heat of fusion 0.657 kJ / mol
Vapor pressure 20.8 Pa at 294 K
Electronegativity 2.19
Specific heat 769 J / (K · kg)
Electric conductivity 10-9S / m
Thermal conductivity 0.235 W / (Km)

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