Problem: At room temperature, a certain element is yellow crystalline solid. It does not conduct electricity, and when hit with a hammer it shatters. Is the element likely to be a metal, a nonmetal, or a semimetal?

FREE Expert Solution

We are asked to identify if a certain element is a metal, a nonmetal, or a semimetal.


Recall that:

  • Solid metals are good conductors of electricity with shine and are not brittle
  • Solid nonmetals form crystalline solids that cannot conduct electricity and are brittle.
  • Solid metalloids/semimetals are poor conductors of electricity and less brittle than nonmetals.
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Problem Details

At room temperature, a certain element is yellow crystalline solid. It does not conduct electricity, and when hit with a hammer it shatters. Is the element likely to be a metal, a nonmetal, or a semimetal?