What are ionic solids?

1 min readdecember 20, 2021


AP Chemistry 🧪

269 resources
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Ionic solids are one of the four major types of solids you need to know about in AP chemistry. The others are metallic, covalent network, and molecular solids. Want more info? Check out this video replay that covers the 🎥 structures of solids for AP chem.

The Basics ⚛️

  • Ionic solids are made up of oppositely charged ions held together by electrostatic attraction (a.k.a. ionic bonds). 
  • Electrostatic attraction just describes the attractive force between a positive charge and a negative charge.
  • The ions form a crystal lattice structure, seen in NaCl below:
  • https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/fiveable-92889.appspot.com/o/images%2F-A4h4QT16Y9Ax.png?alt=media&token=e7d9a64d-25d7-4623-9251-6adfceeae881

    Source: Redefining Knowledge

Properties

  • They're hard and brittle.
  • They have high melting points because ionic bonds require a lot of energy to break.
  • In solid form, ionic compounds are poor conductors.
  • When melted or dissolved in water, they will conduct electricity because they dissociate into individual ions that are free to move around.
  • Not all ionic compounds are soluble, though, so keep those solubility rules in mind!
Browse Study Guides By Unit
⚛️Unit 1 – Atomic Structure & Properties
🤓Unit 2 – Molecular & Ionic Bonding
🌀Unit 3 – Intermolecular Forces & Properties
🧪Unit 4 – Chemical Reactions
👟Unit 5 – Kinetics
🔥Unit 6 – Thermodynamics
⚖️Unit 7 – Equilibrium
🍊Unit 8 – Acids & Bases
🔋Unit 9 – Applications of Thermodynamics
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