Potassium is a chemical element with the symbol K and 19 is the atomic number of It. It is a silvery-white metal that is soft enough to be cut with a knife with little force. Potassium metal reacts rapidly with atmospheric oxygen to form flaky white potassium peroxide in only seconds of exposure. It was first isolated from potash, the ashes of plants, from which its name derives. In the periodic table, potassium is one of the alkali metals, It’s in nature occurs only in ionic salts. Elemental potassium reacts vigorously with water, generating sufficient heat to ignite hydrogen emitted in the reaction, and burning with a lilac-colored flame. It is found dissolved in seawater, and occurs in many minerals such as orthoclase, a common constituent of granites and other igneous rocks.
Chemically It is very similar to sodium, It was suspected in 1702 that they were different elements that combine with the same anions to make similar salts, And was proven in 1807 using electrolysis.
Physical and Chemical Properties Of Potassium
- It is soft and shiny metal which has a melting point 63 degrees and the boiling point as 770 degrees.
- Potassium metal can float on water
- It reacts with water violently and gives hydrogen which can actually catch fire and may explode
- It can readily react with chlorine, fluorine, sulfur, nitrogen and phosphorous.
- It has a green vapour and lavender cloured flame
- Once isolated, It turns into a malleable metal with a silver color profile.
- It reacts with water violently and gives off hydrogen gas
Food sources of K
Potassium is present in all fruits, vegetables, meat and fish. Foods with high potassium concentrations include yam, parsley, dried apricots, milk, chocolate, all nuts especially almonds and pistachios, potatoes, bamboo shoots, bananas, avocados, coconut water, soybeans, and bran. And other form of availability in Milk, coffee, tea, other nonalcoholic beverages, and potatoes are the top sources of It.