Group 2 Elements the Alkaline Earth Metals
Alkaline earth metals are found in minerals within the earth's crust - Magnesium and Calcium are two of the most abundant metals. Calcium (CaCO3) occurs in the mineral calcite in limestone and in the ornamental stone dolomite CaCO3.MgCO3 (the two carbonates being present in equal molecular proportions). Strontium commonly occurs in nature, and is the 15th most abundant element on earth. Beryllium is dissimilar in behaviour to other Group 2 elements and is unreactive with water and air unless heated to a high temperature.
Characteristic behaviour of alkaline earth metals is that they will react with water and create an alkaline solution. They will react with non-metals to form salts which are white in colour. Group 2 elements are highly reactive and are found in compounds added to make colours in fireworks.
- Barium compounds flame a pale green
- Strontium compounds flame crimson
- Calcium compounds flame a brick red
- Magnesium compounds create a brilliant white light