Iridium (Ir) – Periodic Table (Element Information & More)

Iridium (Ir) element Periodic table

This is a SUPER easy guide on Iridium element.

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

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

Let’s finish this very quickly.

Iridium Element (Ir) Information

Appearance appearance of iridium
Silvery white metallic appearance
State (at STP)Solid
Position in Periodic tableIridium in periodic table (Position)
Group: 9, Period: 6, Block: d
Categoryiridium element category
Transition metals
Atomic number or 
Protons
77
Neutrons115
Electrons77
SymbolIr
Atomic mass Iridium (Ir) atomic mass
192.22 u
Electrons arrangement

or 

Bohr model
Bohr model of iridium (Electrons arrangement in iridium, Ir)
2, 8, 18, 32, 15, 2
Electronic configuration[Xe] 4f14 5d7 6s2
Atomic radiusIridium (Ir) atomic radius
202 picometers (van der Waals radius)
1st Ionization energy9.1 eV
Electronegativity Electronegativity of iridium (Ir)
2.2 (Pauling scale)
Crystal structurecrystal structure of iridium
FCC (Face centered cubic)
Melting point2719 K or 2446 °C or 4435 °F
Boiling point4403 K or 4130 °C or 7466 °F
Density22.56 g/cm3
Main isotope193Ir
Who discovered Iridium and when?Smithson Tennant in 1803
CAS number7439-88-5

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Iridium in Periodic table

Iridium element is in group 9 and period 6 of the Periodic table. Iridium is the d-block element and it belongs to transition metals group.

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Why is Iridium in Period 6?

Why is Iridium in Period 6

Let me ask you a question.

How many shells does an iridium atom have?

It’s 6. Right? 

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

From the Bohr model, it can be found that the number of orbits or shells in iridium is 6. Hence, as iridium has 6 orbits, it lies in period 6 of the Periodic table.

Why is Iridium in d-block?

Why is Iridium 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 iridium is [Xe] 4f14 5d7 6s2

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

Hence, iridium is the d-block element.

Is Iridium a Transition Metal? Why?

Is Iridium a Transition Metal

Yes, Iridium 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 Iridium means its normal state in which it has neither gained nor lost any electron/s.

So the ground state of Iridium is Ir.

And the ground state electronic configuration of Iridium is [Xe] 4f14 5d7 6s2.

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

electron configuration of Iridium

Because, there are only seven electrons in the d-orbitals (here 5d orbitals). 

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

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

Thus, Iridium has incomplete d-orbitals.

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

5 Interesting facts about Iridium

Interesting facts about iridium element are mentioned below.

  1. The name “Iridium” was derived from the Latin word “Iris”, which means rainbow.
  2. Iridium was discovered by Chemist Smithson Tennant in 1803.
  3. Iridium is available in very rare quantities in the earth’s crust. Its concentration in earth’s crust is approximately 0.4 parts per billion.
  4. Iridium is the 2nd most dense metal on the periodic table after osmium.
  5. It is very difficult to machine iridium metal as it is very hard.

Properties of Iridium

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

Physical properties of Iridium

Physical properties of iridium are mentioned below.

  • Iridium is a very dense metal having a silvery white metallic appearance.
  • The melting point of iridium is 2446 °C and its boiling point is 4130 °C.
  • The crystal structure of iridium is FCC (Face centered cubic).
  • The atomic mass of iridium is 192.22 u and its density is 22.56 g/cm3.
  • There are many isotopes of iridium, but out of those isotopes, the most abundant isotope is 193Ir (having an abundance of approximately 62.7%).

Chemical properties of Iridium

Chemical properties of iridium are mentioned below.

  • Iridium is chemically unreactive metal and it is resistive to almost all the acids.
  • Iridium is reactive to salts like NaCl (sodium chloride) and NaCN (sodium cyanide).
  • At higher temperatures, iridium may be attacked by oxygen, but not at room temperature.
  • Iridium when reacts with sulfur, it gives iridium disulfide.
  • The electron configuration of iridium is [Xe] 4f14 5d7 6s2, in which the last electron enters the d-orbital. Thus iridium is a transition metal.

Uses of Iridium

Uses of iridium are mentioned below.

  • As Iridium is a dense metal, it is used as an alloying element to make the alloys hard.
  • Iridium can resist higher temperatures and hence it is also used in crucibles.
  • The international standard kilogram weight was made of platinum iridium alloy. It contains 90% platinum and 10% iridium.
  • Iridium is also used in making fountain pen tips as well as it is also used in making electrical contacts.

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External resources:

  1. Iridium – Wikipedia. (2023, January 1). Iridium – Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iridium
  2. Iridium – Element information, properties and uses | Periodic Table. (n.d.). Iridium – Element Information, Properties and Uses | Periodic Table. https://www.rsc.org/periodic-table/element/77/iridium
  3. P. (n.d.). Iridium | Ir (Element) – PubChem. Iridium | Ir (Element) – PubChem. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/element/Iridium
  4. It’s Elemental – The Element Iridium. (n.d.). It’s Elemental – the Element Iridium. https://education.jlab.org/itselemental/ele077.html

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  • Jay

    Jay holds the roles of an author and editor at Periodic Table Guide, leveraging his ability to provide clear explanations on typically unexciting topics related to periodic table. He is passionate to help student, and he finds immense joy in his endeavors to make learning enjoyable and accessible. You can connect with him on facebook and twitter.

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