Sodium, an alkali metal one of the highly reactive metal in the periodic table shows lot of reactions with other elements and compounds such as oxygen, water and more and reacts in a rapid rate when compare with other metals.
Sodium reacts with following inorganic elements and compounds and give different products and we will look in detail about those reactions.
Sodium reacts with acidic organic compounds such as alkynes with acidic hydrogen, alcohols, phenol and carboxylic acids.
First, we learn about reactions of sodium with inorganic compounds.
When a sodium metal piece is put in the air, there are several reactions occurring as a chain.
Air contains nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, water vapor and more gases. Sodium reacts with oxygen gas and produce sodium oxide (Na2O) which is a strong basic oxide.
Na(s) + O2(g) → Na2O(s)
Sodium does not react with nitrogen gas.
Also sodium reacts with water vapor in the air and produce sodium hydroxide and hydrogen gas.
2Na(s) + 2H2O(g) → 2NaOH(aq) + H2(g)
Then, produced sodium oxide reacts with water vapor and produce sodium hydroxide.
Na2O(s) + H2O(g) → 2NaOH(aq)
Sodium hydroxide will react with carbon dioxide and form sodium carbonate and water.
2NaOH(aq) + CO2(g) → Na2CO3(aq) + H2O(l)
Sodium vigorously reacts with water and produce strong alkaline aqueous NaOH solution and emit hydrogen gas. Sometimes explosions can be occurred due to great energy released from the reaction.
2Na(s) + 2H2O(l) → 2NaOH(aq) + H2(g)
Sodium chlorine gas end produce sodium chloride. This reaction too emit great amount of heat to the outside.
2Na(s) + Cl2(g) → 2NaCl(s)
When sodium is heated with sulfur, sodium sulfide is given as the product.
2Na(s) + S(s) → Na2S(s)
Sodium phosphide is given as the product, when sodium is heated with phosphorous.
3Na(s) + P(s) → Na3P(s)
Like other metals ( except Cu, Ag, Au, Hg), sodium reacts with dilute acids and form hydrogen gas and a salt.
Sodium reacts with dilute HCl and produce sodium chloride and hydrogen gas.
2Na(s) + HCl(aq) → 2NaCl(aq) + H2(g)
Sodium reacts with dilute sulfuric acid, and form sodium sulfate aqueous solution and hydrogen gas.
2Na(s) + H2SO4(aq) → Na2SO4(aq) + H2(g)
This is an example to prove ammonia has acidic properties too (ammonia is famous for as a basic gas). Sodamide (NaNH2) and hydrogen gas are given as products.
2Na(s) + 2NH3(g) → 2NaNH2(s) + H2(g)
Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) gas, a very toxic gas reacts with sodium and produce sodium sulfide and emit hydrogen gas. So it is clear that, hydrogen sulfide is an acidic gas because hydrogen gas is released.
2Na(s) + H2S(g) → Na2S(s) + H2(g)
Sodium reacts with acidic organic compounds
such as alkynes with acidic hydrogen, alcohols,
phenol, carboxylic acids
and most times hydrogen gas is produced too during the reactions.
Sodium only reacts alkynes which have acidic hydrogen atom(s). This reaction emits hydrogen gas and produce sodium salt of alkyne. This is an useful reaction when you extending the carbon chain in organic chemistry.
Sodium reacts with all of above organic compounds and emit hydrogen gas and sodium alkoxide, sodium phenoate, sodium carboxylate are given as products by alcohol, phenol and carboxylic acid compoundsrespectively.
According to the lewis structure of Nitrogen molecule there is a triple bond in between two nitrogen atoms. That triple bond is very strong and not easy to break the molecule. The energy released by while Sodium oxidizing to Sodium +1 cation is not enough to break the triple bond of nitrogen. Therefore, Sodium does not react with Nitrogen gas.
Sodium reacts with alcohols and emit hydrogen gas. This reaction is similar to typical metal - acid reaction. Therefore, we can suggest that alcohols have acidic properties. But, actually alcohols are weak acids. But has enough acidic characteristics to react with alcohols.
Alcohols and carboxylic acids reacts with sodium metal to show typical metal - acid reactions.
In a normal oxygen supply, sodium gives sodium oxide (Na2O) as the product with oxygen gas. If an sodium metal is exposed to the oxygen gas stream, Sodium peroxide (Na2O2) is given as the result.