AQA AS Chemistry

Revision Notes

1.4.9 Properties of Metallic Substances

Metallic Lattice Structures

  • Metals form giant metallic lattices in which the metal ions are surrounded by a ‘sea’ of delocalised electrons
  • The metal ions are often packed in hexagonal layers or in a cubic arrangement
  • This layered structure with the delocalised electrons gives a metal its key properties


States of Matter Metallic Lattice, downloadable AS & A Level Chemistry revision notes

Layers of copper ions (the delocalised electrons are not shown in the diagram)


  • If other atoms are added to the metal structure, such as carbon atoms, this creates an alloy
  • Alloys are much stronger than pure metals, because the other atoms stop the layers of metal ions sliding over each other easily

Metallic Bonding Properties Table 

Chemical Bonding Table_7, downloadable AS & A Level Chemistry revision notes

Exam Tip

You should be able to draw the structure of a metal with positive ions in layers, and the delocalised electrons surrounding the ions

If drawing the structure of a metal in the exam, make sure to include labels for metal ion and delocalised electrons


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