Sodium (Na)

Definition - What does Sodium (Na) mean?

Sodium is a chemical element with the atomic number of 11. It is an alkali metal and found in group I of the periodic table. This element is soft with a shiny silver appearance. Sodium exists in numerous minerals such as rock salt (NaCl), sodalite and feldspars. It is the sixth most abundant element in the Earth’s crust.

Sodium is a highly reactive element because of its ability to readily donate an electron from its outer shell and create a positively charged atom (Na+ cation). It can cause corrosion in various metallic objects.

Corrosionpedia explains Sodium (Na)

Sodium can combine readily with other chemical elements in the atmosphere, or if in contact with metals can lead to various sodium compounds that promote the corrosion process. The salinity of seawater is due to the presence of sodium chloride.

Some common sodium compounds include:

  • Sodium chloride
  • Sodium sulfate
  • Sodium chlorate
  • Sodium carbonate
  • Sodium hydroxide
  • Sodium hypochlorite
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