Chemistry - Iron


  • Iron is the most common element found in largely in outer as well inner core of the earth.

  • The symbol of iron is ‘Fe’ and atomic number is ‘26.’

  • Iron is one of the earliest known elements that is being used by human beings.

Salient Features of Iron

  • Following are the major features of iron −

    • Pure iron element is soft, ductile, and malleable.

    • The boiling point of iron ranges between 15330C and 24500C.

    • Iron easily gets attracted towards magnet.

    • In dry air, iron remains inactive and does not react (with air); however, in moist air, it reacts and forms rust.

    • Pure iron normally does not react with pure water; however, it reacts easily with ordinary of polluted water and rust forms.

    • Iron reacts with halogen and Sulphur to form halide and sulphide accordingly.

Occurrence of Iron

  • The inner and outer cores of the earth are largely made up of iron and nickel.

  • Most likely, iron is the most abundantly available element of the earth; however, it is the fourth most abundantly available element of the crust.

Types of Iron

  • Following are the major types iron −

    • Hematite - Fe2O3

    • Magnetite - Fe3O4

    • Siderite - FeCO3

Compounds of Iron

  • Following are the major compounds of iron −

    • Iron (II) oxide - FeO

    • Iron (III) chloride - FeCl3

    • Iron (III) oxide-hydroxide - Fe(OH)3

    • Iron (II) sulfide - FeS

    • Iron (II) chloride - FeCl2

    • Iron phosphate - FePO4

    • Ferrate (VI) - (FeO4)2-

    • Iron (II) acetate - Fe(C2H3O2)2

    • Iron (III) sulfide - Fe2S3

    • Iron (III) chromate - Fe2(CrO4)3

    • Iron (II) hydroxide - Fe(OH)2

    • Iron (III) acetate - C14H27Fe3O

    • Iron (II) oxalate - FeC2O4

    • Iron (II) fluride - FeF2

Uses of Iron

  • Among all the metals, iron is most widely used (about 90 percent of world’s total metal production).

  • In most of the heavy industries, iron is the most essential element.

  • Industries like railway, ship building, automobile, engineering construction, etc., everywhere, iron is essentially required.