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Lithium [Li]


Lithium is Element 3 of Periodic table with atomic number 3, atomic weight 6.941, symbol Li, has a Body Centered Cubic structure and Silver color. Lithium is a alkali metal element. Trivial name of Lithium is alkali metals. Know about Lithium Facts, Physical Properties, Chemical Properties, Electronic configuration, Atomic and Crystal Structure.

Lithium Stone

Lithium History

The element Lithium was discovered by Johan August Arfwedson in year 1817 in Sweden . Lithium derived its name the Greek word lithos, meaning ‘stone’

Lithium (from Greek:λίθος lithos, “stone”) is a chemical element with the symbol Li and atomic number 3. It is a soft, silver-white metal belonging to the alkali metal group of chemical elements. Under standard conditions it is the lightest metal and the least dense solid element.

How to Locate Lithium on Periodic Table

Periodic table is arranged by atomic number, number of protons in the nucleus which is same as number of electrons. The atomic number increases from left to right. Periodic table starts at top left ( Atomic number 1) and ends at bottom right (atomic number 118). Therefore you can directly look for atomic number 3 to find Lithium on periodic table.

Another way to read periodic table and locate an element is by using group number (column) and period number (row). To locate Lithium on periodic table look for cross section of group 1 and period 2 in the modern periodic table

Lithium Facts

Atomic Symbol
Atomic Number
Atomic Weight
Alkali Metal
Group in Periodic Table
Group Name
lithium family
Period in Periodic Table
Block in Periodic Table
Electronic Configuration
Melting Point
180.54 °C
Boiling Point
1342 °C
Electronic Shell Structure
[2, 1]
CAS Number

Lithium Atomic and Orbital Properties

Lithium atoms have 3 electrons and the electronic shell structure is [2, 1] with Atomic Term Symbol (Quantum Numbers) 2S1/2.

Lithium Atomic
Lithium Isotopes


Atomic Structure of Lithium

Atomic Number
Atomic Radius
167 pm (1.67 Å)
Number of Electrons (with no charge)
Atomic Volume
12.9738317757 cm3
Number of Protons
Covalent Radius
134 pm (1.34 Å)
Mass Number
Van der Waals Radius
182 pm
Number of Neutrons
Neutron Cross Section
0.045 σa/barns
Shell structure (Electrons per energy level)
[2, 1]
Electron Configuration
[He] 2s1
Valence Electrons
Oxidation State

Ground State Electronic Configuration of Lithium – Neutral Lithium Atom

The ground state electronic configuration of Neutral Lithium atom is [He] 2s1. The portion of Lithium configuration that is equivalent to the noble gas of the preceding period, is abbreviated as [He]. For atoms with many electrons, this notation can become lengthy and so an abbreviated notation is used.This is important as it is the Valence electrons 2s1, electrons in the outermost shell that determine the chemical properties of the element.

Unabbreviated electronic configuration of neutral Lithium

Complete ground state electronic configuration for the Lithium atom, Unabbreviated electronic configuration

1s2 2s1

Atomic Spectrum of Lithium

Atomic Spectrum of Lithium