Cobalt (Co) – Periodic Table (Element Information & More)

Cobalt (Co) element Periodic table

This is a SUPER easy guide on Cobalt element.

In fact, the table mentioned below is the perfect information box (Which gives you every single detail about the Cobalt element in Periodic table.)

So if you want to know anything about Cobalt element, then this guide is for you.

Let’s dive right into it!

Cobalt Element (Co) Information

Appearance of Cobalt appearance of cobalt
Bluish lustrous grey metallic
State of Cobalt at STPSolid
Position of Cobalt in Periodic tablecobalt in periodic table (Position)
Group: 9, Period: 4, Block: d
Category of Cobalt elementcobalt element category
Transition metals
Atomic number of Cobalt, or 
Protons in Cobalt
27
Neutrons in Cobalt32
Electrons in Cobalt27
Symbol of CobaltCo
Atomic mass of Cobalt cobalt (Co) atomic mass
58.933 u
Electrons arrangement in Cobalt

or 

Bohr model of Cobalt
Bohr model of cobalt (Electrons arrangement in cobalt, Co)
2, 8, 15, 2
Electronic configuration of Cobalt[Ar] 3d7 4s2
Atomic radius of Cobaltcobalt (Co) atomic radius
192 picometers (van der Waals radius)
1st Ionization energy of Cobalt7.881 eV
Electronegativity of Cobalt Electronegativity of cobalt (Co)
1.88 (Pauling scale)
Crystal structure of Cobaltcrystal structure of cobalt
HCP (Hexagonal close packing)
Melting point of Cobalt1768 K or 1495 °C or 2723 °F
Boiling point of Cobalt3200 K or 2927 °C or 5301 °F
Density of Cobalt8.9 g/cm3
Main isotope of Cobalt59Co
Who discovered Cobalt and when?Georg Brandt in 1735
CAS number7440-48-4

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Cobalt in Periodic table

Cobalt element is in group 9 and period 4 of the Periodic table. Cobalt is the d-block element and it belongs to transition metals group.

H He
Li Be B C N O F Ne
Na Mg Al Si P S Cl Ar
K Ca Sc Ti V Cr Mn Fe Co Ni Cu Zn Ga Ge As Se Br Kr
Rb Sr Y Zr Nb Mo Tc Ru Rh Pd Ag Cd In Sn Sb Te I Xe
Cs Ba La* Hf Ta W Re Os Ir Pt Au Hg Tl Pb Bi Po At Rn
Fr Ra Ac** Rf Db Sg Bh Hs Mt Ds Rg Cn Nh Fl Mc Lv Ts Og
*Ce Pr Nd Pm Sm Eu Gd Tb Dy Ho Er Tm Yb Lu
**Th Pa U Np Pu Am Cm Bk Cf Es Fm Md No Lr

Why is Cobalt in Period 4?

Why is Cobalt in Period 4

Let me ask you a question.

How many shells does cobalt have?

It’s 4. Right? 

You have already seen the bohr model of cobalt atom in the above table.

From the Bohr model, it can be found that the number of orbits or shells in cobalt is 4. Hence, as cobalt has 4 orbits, it lies in period 4 of the Periodic table. 

Why is Cobalt in d-block?

Why is Cobalt in d-block

Before knowing this reason, first of all I want to ask you a simple question.

How can you determine the blocks-wise position of elements?

The simple answer: The elements will lie in the s, p, d or f block will completely depend upon the subshell in which the last electron will enter.

For example; the electron configuration of cobalt is [Ar] 4s2 3d7

So the last electron of cobalt enters the d-subshell or d-orbital. 

Hence, cobalt is the d-block element.

Is Cobalt a Transition Metal? Why?

Is Cobalt a Transition Metal

Yes, Cobalt is a transition metal because it has incompletely filled d-orbital in its ground state.

Let me explain the exact meaning of this.

According to the definition of transition metals;
The element should compulsorily have incomplete d-orbitals, either in their ground state (M) or most common oxidation states (M1+, M2+, etc) then only they are called transition metals.

Now, the ground state of Cobalt means its normal state in which it has neither gained nor lost any electron/s.

So the ground state of Cobalt is Co.

And the ground state electronic configuration of Cobalt is [Ar] 4s2 3d7.

In this state, if we see the electron configuration of Cobalt, then it possesses incomplete d-orbitals.

electron configuration of Cobalt

Because, there are only seven electrons in the d-orbitals. 

In order to have the complete d-orbitals, there must be 10 electrons in it.

But in the ground state electronic configuration of cobalt, you can see that it has only 7 electrons in d-orbitals.

Thus, Cobalt has incomplete d-orbitals.

And hence, as Cobalt has incomplete d-orbitals, it is considered as a transition metal.

7 Interesting facts about Cobalt

Interesting facts about cobalt element are mentioned below.

  1. Cobalt is the name derived from the German word “kobald” (meaning “goblin”).
  2. The abundance of cobalt in earth’s crust is around 25 ppm (parts per million) by weight. [1]
  3. Cobalt is one of the few metals that are naturally magnetic. Also cobalt can maintain the magnetism at high temperatures.
  4. Africa is the leading producer of cobalt in the world.
  5. Cobalt is also present in the human body, but its excess amount can be dangerous.
  6. Around 30% of cobalt produced nowadays is used in ceramics industries as well as paints industries.
  7. Cobalt is obtained as a byproduct while mining other metals (especially copper and nickel).

Properties of Cobalt

The physical and chemical properties of cobalt element are mentioned below.

Physical properties of Cobalt

Physical properties of cobalt are mentioned below.

  • Cobalt is a transition metal having bluish lustrous grey metallic surface.
  • The melting point of cobalt is 1495 °C and its boiling point is 2927 °C.
  • There are various synthetic isotopes of cobalt, but the most abundant naturally occurring stable isotope is the 59Co.
  • The atomic mass of cobalt is 58.933 u and its density is 8.9 g/cm3.

Chemical properties of Cobalt

Chemical properties of cobalt are mentioned below.

  • As cobalt is fairly reactive, it is not found in a free state in nature. But it is always found as a compound with other elements.
  • If cobalt is kept open in the air, it slowly reacts with the oxygen of the air and forms cobalt oxide.
  • Cobalt has incomplete d-orbitals. Hence it is classified as a transition metal on the periodic table.

Uses of Cobalt

Uses of cobalt are mentioned below.

  • Cobalt is used mainly as an alloying element  in manufacturing of superalloys which possess anticorrosive properties as well as they are also stable at higher temperature.
  • Cobalt is used in manufacturing inks, glass, paints that require a blue colouring agent.
  • When cobalt combines with other elements, it can give other different colors. So it is used as a coloring agent in manufacturing various other materials.
  • Cobalt has a property to maintain its magnetism even at higher temperatures. Hence cobalt is used to make magnets for generators, drives, and other devices that are subjected to higher temperature.
  • Cobalt is also used in making rechargeable batteries.
  • The alloys used for manufacturing aircraft engine parts need to be strong and heat resistant. So for such purposes, cobalt is used as an alloying metal for preparing such alloys.
  • Radioactive isotope of cobalt (60Co) is used in medical applications to treat cancer tumors.

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References:
Chemical data: Wikipedia, Chemspider
Cobalt element: Image credit – Wikimedia commons

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