Why is copper less reactive than zinc?



Why is copper less reactive than zinc?

In: Chemistry

It depends what you mean by “reactive”, as there are quite a few types of chemical reactions. Generally speaking, elements closer to the right side of the periodic table are more “electronegative”, meaning they crave electrons more, so since zinc is one spot to the right from copper, that could be a reason it’s more willing to take the electrons of elements that want to give electrons away.

But this system of thinking gets kind of complicated when you’re talking about the transition metals (the metals found in the thinner bridge between the left and right ends of the periodic table) like copper and zinc, so it really depends on what type of reaction you mean.