User:Vilimaka/The Periodic Kingdom: 3D-Periodic Trends

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Today's date: 21 November 2018

The Periodic Kingdom: 3D Periodic Trends

Aerial View of Peter Atkin's Periodic Kingdom

A few years ago, I was required to read and review three books: The Double Helix by James D. Watson (published in 1968), A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking (published in 1988), and The Periodic Kingdom by Peter Atkins. These books, as you can see, are quite old and I just did not like their bare look.

I spent almost a week flipping through the first couple of pages of Hawking's book but my smattering knowledge of Physics from previous university studies just didn't seemed adequate to offer me some understanding of what the book was about. I then decided to put Hawking's book aside and to begin reading from that of Watson. I found this book easier to understand. And then it was Atkin's Periodic Kingdom. It was this book that caught my attention for two consecutive nights.

I liked Atkin's book as I did not expect the language used in a book about chemistry to be vividly descriptive. Atkin's excellent knowledge of basic but abstract chemistry concepts, coupled with his creative use of language jump-started my imagination. I am a slow reader, but with Atkin's book, I couldn't let go of the book for the first night. I was able to imagine flying over this fictitious island and observing its terrains in terms of the different properties of the elements in the periodic table. I was able to recall my days as a highschool and ungergraduate student wrestling with the confusion about the names and properties of the chemical elements. Through Atkin's book, I was able to make meaningful connections between fragmented bits of knowledge that I had memorised over the years. 

The Periodic Kingdom is a geographical metaphor that Atkins used to describe the map of a fictitious island (the Periodic table).It is this experience from which I derived the idea of using MS Excel to plot 3D graphs of the periodic trends.

From our high school and university chemistry courses, we were taught that "electronegaivity increases up the group and from left to right" across the periodic table". We so used to seeing the arrows drawn up the groups and across the periods. My chemistry teachers used it, many chemistry textbooks today are using it.

Apart from the trends in atomic radii, I have not seen any 3D graphs of the other periodic properties (electronegativity, ionisation energies, etc). With MS Excel, one can easily plot a 3D graph of any of the periodic properties of the elements. These graphs (shown below) can be rotated and viewed from different angles.One can observe the periodic trends from any angle, even from underneath the graph.

Is there a better (fun and creative) way to teach the periodic trends? Using computer generated 3D-charts is one creative way of teaching and thinking. I believe that using the 3D-charts will help improve students' imagination and understanding of the periodic trends.

Spreadsheets for 3D Periodic Trends

Open MS Excel and create a spreadsheet - as shown in the second table below containing the electronegativity valuse of the elements (other properties can be used).

Table showing the positions of some of the elements in the Periodic table (Noble gages excluded)

Grp 1
Grp 2
Grp 3
Grp 4
Grp 5
Grp 6
Grp 7
Grp 8
Grp 9
Grp10
Grp11
Grp12
Grp13
Grp14
Grp15
Grp16
Grp17
Period 1
H
















Period 2
Li
Be














F
Period 3
Na
Mg














Cl
Period 4
K
Ca
Sc
Ti
V
Cr
Mn
Fe
Co
Ni
Cu
Zn
Ga
Ge
As
Se
Br
Period 5
Rb
Sr
Y
Zr
Nb
Mo
Tc
Ru
Rb
Pd
Ag
Cd
In
Sn
Sb
Te
I
Period 6
Cs
Ba
La
Hf
Ta
W
Re
Os
Ir
Pt
Au
Hg
TI
Pb
Bi
Po
At
Period 7
Fr
Ra
















Table showing the electronegativities of the elements in the table above.

Grp 1
Grp 2
Grp 3
Grp 4
Grp 5
Grp 6
Grp 7
Grp 8
Grp 9
Grp10
Grp11
Grp12
Grp13
Grp14
Grp15
Grp16
Grp17
Period 1
2.1
















Period 2
1.0
1.5









2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
Period 3
0.9
1.2









1.5 1.8 2.1 2.5 3.0
Period 4
0.8
1.0 1.3 1.5 1.6 1.6 1.5 1.8 1.9 1.9 1.9 1.6 1.6 1.8 2.0 2.4 2.8
Period 5
0.8
1.0 1.2 1.4 1.6 1.8 1.9 2.5 2.2 2.2 1.9 1.7 1.7 1.8 1.9 2.1 2.5
Period 6
0.7 0.9 1.0 1.3 1.5 1.7 1.9 2.2 2.2 2.2 2.4 1.9 1.8 1.9 1.9 2.0 2.2
Period 7
0.7 0.9















Creating 3D Charts



Icon activity.jpg

Draw 3D charts using Excel

Make sure the 'Chart Wizard' icon is in your main toolbar. If the icon is not in yout toolbar,:
Electronegativity trends using MS Excel 3D-graph
  1. If the icon is not in your toolbar, click "Tools" and select "Customize" and drag out the Chart Wizard and drop it in the main toolbar.
  2. In your Excel table (the second table above), highlight the required data range.
  3. Click Chart Wizard
  4. In the field labelled 'Chart Type', select Column graph.
  5. For the 'Chart sub-type', select 3-D Column, then click 'Next'
  6. Select Columns in 'Series in', then click 'Next'
  7. Add a title for the graph, label the axes, then click 'Next'
  8. Click 'Finish'

The Chart on the right will appear in your spreadsheet.


Rotating 3D Charts



Icon activity.jpg

Rotate your 3D chart

Step 1: Click on the chart to select it. The corners of the chart appear solid black when it's selected. See diagram below:
Periodic Kingdom ET blacn corners.JPG

Step 2: Point cursor to any corner of graph and check whether it changes to a black cross, if not left-click once (again).

Step 3: While the cursor is on the black cross, hold down the left side and turn.

Periodic Kingdom Elec Trend 1.JPG






Keep rotating to view the trends from angles:

         
Electronegativity Trends (From Top)
Electronegativity Trends (From Underneath)
To rotate chart: 

Step 1: Click on the chart to select it. The corners of the chart appear solid black when it's selected. See diagram below:

Step 2: Point cursor to any corner of graph and check whether it changes to a black cross, if not left-click once (again).

Periodic Kingdom ET blacn corners.JPG







Step 3: While the cursor is on the black cross, hold down the left side and turn.

Periodic Kingdom Elec Trend 1.JPG






Keep rotating to view the trends from angles:

         
Electronegativity Trends (From Top)
Electronegativity Trends (From Underneath)