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Question

How would you account for the following:
Of the $${d}^{4}$$ species, $${Cr}^{2+}$$ is strongly reducing while manganese (III) is strongly oxidising.


Solution

$${Cr}^{2+}$$ is strongly reducing in nature. It has a $${d}^{4}$$ configuration. While acting as a reducing agent, it gets oxidised to $${Cr}^{3+}$$ (electronic configuration $${d}^{3}$$). This $${d}^{3}$$ configuration can be written as $${t}_{2}^{3}$$ configuration, which is a more stable configuration. 

In the case of $${Mn}^{3+}$$ $$({d}^{4}),$$ it gains one electron to become $${Mn}^{2+}$$ $$({d}^{5})$$. This has an exactly half filled $$d-$$ orbital and is highly stable.

Chemistry

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