FAQ’s on Group 16 Elements in JEE

Group 16 elements, popularly known as chalcogens are one of the main members of the p-block in the modern periodic table. Questions are asked almost every year on the properties related to these elements. Some FAQs related to group 16 elements are given below:

Learn Group 16 Elements with Periodic Table

Important Questions For Group 16 Elements

Question: What are the general characteristics of group 16 elements?

Answer: Group 16 elements or chalcogens include Oxygen, Sulphur, Selenium, Tellurium, and Polonium. The elements of Group 16 have a general electronic configuration of “ns2np4” that is, they have six electrons in their outermost shell. Atomic and ionic radii increase from top to bottom in the group due to the increase in the number of shells. Ionisation enthalpy decreases down the group as the size of the atoms increases. The value of electron gain enthalpy becomes less negative from sulphur to polonium. However, oxygen has a lesser negative electron gain enthalpy than sulphur due to its compact nature of the atoms.

Question: What are the chemical properties exhibited by group 16 elements?

Answer: The elements of Group 16 exhibit a wide range of oxidation states of which -2 oxidation state is the most prominent. The stability of -2 oxidation state decreases down the group. Some prominent reactions of group 16 elements are:

  • Reactivity with hydrogen: All the elements of group 16 react with hydrogen to form their respective hydrides of the formula H2E (where ‘E’ stands for the elements of group 16). The bond strength of H-E bond decreases down the group and as a result the acidity of hydrides increases down the group.
  • Reactivity with oxygen: All the elements of group 16 other than oxygen react with oxygen to form oxides of EO2 type or EO3 type (where ‘E’ stands for group 16 elements other than oxygen). These oxides are acidic in nature. The reducing property of dioxides decreases down the group from SO2 to TeO2.
  • Reactivity with halogens: Group 16 elements form a wide range of halides of EX6 type, EX4 type and EX2 type, where E is an element of group 16 and X is a halogen. The stability of the halides decreases from F to I. Oxygen does not form dibromides and dichlorides.

Questions: Which reference books can one follow for group 16 elements?

Answer: While covering group 16 elements for JEE, one must go through the NCERT class 12th chemistry textbook part-1. A brisk walk through NCERT will not only give you a sound idea of the various topics you need to cover according to the JEE syllabus but also develop the fundamentals regarding the topic. Apart from this, you can follow a reference book to understand some concepts which are not elaborately explained in NCERT. J.D. Lee’s book on inorganic chemistry can be used as a reference book. In addition, you can also practice previous year JEE questions and questions from O.P Tandon’s book for inorganic chemistry.

For further details related to group 16 elements for JEE chemistry, get in touch with our mentors here at BYJU’S.