What is an allotrope? An allotrope is a variant of a substance consisting of one type of atom. All allotropes have different physical properties. In fact they differ chemically. Some examples of allotropes include carbon, oxygen, sulfur, tin, antimony, arsenic, selenium, iron, and phosphorus. An allotrope of an element will have set differences between another allotrope of that same element.
Most of the time one allotrope is more abundant than another. The element phosphorus comes in at least three allotropic forms red, black, and purple. The most common being red and white phosphorus. Carbon is an element with the most known allotropes. Carbon has eight known allotropes. Allotropes are carbon are very different. The go from hard to soft, opaque to transparent, abrasive to smooth, and cheap to expensive. Some forms of carbon include coal, soot, and diamond.
Allotropes have different physical properties. Such as color, luster, density, hardness, and odor. Many allotropes differ in chemical activity. Oxygen usually exists as a non-smelling gas that we can not live without. Each molecule contains two atoms of oxygen. Oxygen also exists in the form of ozone. Ozone is a poisonous gas that has a horrible odor. Each ozone molecule contains three atoms of oxygen.
One might think that for any particular element, the chemical form would always be the same. This is not always the case. Some elements exist in different chemical modifications; the different forms are called allotropes. Allotropy, that is, the property of existing as allotropes, does not apply merely to the substance existing in different physical states as, for example, when lead melts and changes from solid lead to liquid lead. In this article we examine some of the best known allotropes, those of carbon, oxygen, and tin.
Carbon forms two well-known allotropes, graphite and diamond. Graphite is a soft, black, slippery substance; by contrast, diamond is one of the hardest...