Periodic Table Facts

Share the facts!

Periodic Table FactsFacts About the Periodic Table of Elements


The periodic table is the most recognized image in chemistry and it is a group of 118 different elements. The elements on the periodic table are organized by their atomic number, so that all the atoms of each element have an order relative to one another.

There are three different types of symbols used on a periodic table: some elements use their English names, some use abbreviations while others use Latin symbols.

The periodic table can be thought of as a list with rows representing periods, columns representing groups, and all the known chemical elements arranged within each cell.

The first periodic table was made by Russian chemist Dimitri Mendeleev in 1869 and it was improved upon many times until its latest layout in 1993.

Chemists study some common properties and classify the 118 discovered elements in a table based on their properties.
The 118 elements discovered differ from each other in the atoms that make them up. The main difference between the arrangement of elements in the modern periodic table and the Russian chemist Mendeleev’s table is that the former is arranged in ascending order of atomic number. In fact, it was not until the second decade of the 20th century that it was recognized that the order of elements in the periodic table corresponds to their atomic number, an integer equal to the positive charge of the nucleus expressed in electron units.

His original table arranged the elements according to their atomic weights, but in 1913, Dutch amateur theoretical physicist Anton van den Broek suggested that the periodic table should be ordered by the nuclear charge of each atom.

In the process of revising his chemistry textbook in 1868, chemist Julius Lothar Meyer of the University of Wroclaw in Germany compiled a periodic table that turned out to be strikingly similar to the 1869 version of the famous Russian professor of chemistry.
Meyer failed to classify all elements correctly.

Unlike his predecessors, Mendeleev had enough confidence in his periodic table that he could use it to predict the properties of several new elements and their compounds. It includes 63 known elements, listed in ascending order of atomic weight; the Russian chemistry professor also made room for undiscovered elements, whose atomic weights he predicted.

Mendeleev had a new periodic law (“elements arranged according to their atomic weights have a well-defined property periodicity”) that describes a model for all 63 elements known at the time.

After writing the properties of the elements on cards, Dmitry Mendeleev set out to classify them by increasing their atomic weight, according to the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Dmitry Mendeleev left several gaps for new elements that have yet to be discovered. Where there were blank spaces in Dmitri Mendeleev’s table, he correctly predicted the weight and chemical behavior of some of the missing elements: gallium, scandium, and germanium.

In 1902, he admitted that he had not foreseen the existence of the forgotten and incredibly unreactive elements – the noble gases – which now make up the entire eighth group of the table.

Some scientists believe the table is finite, containing 137 elements.

Dmitri Mendeleev - Creator of the Periodic Table of Elements
An artist’s sculpture of Dmitri Mendeleev, creator of the Periodic Table of Elements.

Elements are organized according to their atomic numbers such that atomic numbers increase from left to right on each row.

All known elements are organized from left to right into periods or cycles, depending on the number of protons in their nucleus.

The elements are also organized into groups based on their characteristics. When chemical elements are arranged in this way, a repeating pattern occurs in their properties, called the “periodic law”, when elements in the same column (group) have similar properties.

There are many elements arranged by their chemical behavior and atomic weight, reflecting the individual properties of chemical elements. Of these, 90 elements are found in nature, and the rest are strictly artificial.

The element with the lowest atomic number is hydrogen, and the element with the highest atomic number is oganesson.

Valence electrons are simply the number of electrons in an element increasing from 1 to 8 as we move from left to right in the periodic table.
The first element of each cycle has one valence electron, and the last element has eight electrons.

As you move down the periodic table, the number of electrons in a cycle increases; therefore, as the atomic energy levels increase, the number of energy levels per energy level increases.

According to Los Alamos National Laboratory, the period number of an element represents the highest energy level (in the unexcited state) occupied by electrons in that element.

The way an element placed in the organization of the table, along with its chemical properties, depends largely on the number of protons of the elements and on how its electrons are arranged.

The Danish physicist Niels Bohr argued that elements of the same group on the periodic table can have identical electron configurations on their outer shells and that an element’s chemical properties depend largely on the arrangement of electrons on the outer shell of its atoms.


Fact Sources:

10 periodic table facts. (2011, March 5). ThoughtCo.
11 cool facts about the periodic table. (2016, June 9). India Today.
150 years on, the periodic table has more stories than it has elements. (2020, February 7). Science News.
Coffey, R. (2011, November 30). 20 things you didn’t know about the periodic table. Discover Magazine.
Developer. (2022, April 11). Periodic table facts for kids. Facts Just for Parents, Teachers and Students.
Digital Vector Studios. (n.d.). Periodic table chemistry facts for kids | Science with Science With Kids.
DK science: Periodic table. (2017, March 7). Fact Monster – A Trusted Reference Site for Kids.
Easy Science. (2015, June 17). Periodic table facts for kids. Easy Science For Kids.
James. (2016, September 28). Facts about the periodic table. Primary Facts.
Kidadl Team. (2022, January 13). 56 periodic table facts for all the chemistry nerds out there. Free Ideas For Family Fun & Learning | Kidadl.
Periodic table of elements. (2022, March 10).
Periodic table. (2018, April 10). Science4Fun – Learn Science experiments, Topics, ideas and activities.
Periodic table. (n.d.). Encyclopedia Britannica.
Periodic table: Have you heard of these 5 elements? (n.d.). Let’s talk bromine.
Scerri, E. R. (2011, January 21). The evolution of the periodic system. Scientific American.