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Valency Of Fluorine: Meaning, Electronic Configuration and Uses

Fluorine, Valency Of Fluorine

The Valency of Fluorine: Fluorine is a chemical element that has an atomic number of 9. It is the first element in the halogen family as well as the lightest of them. It is reactive compared to other electronegative elements.

It reacts with other elements except argon, neon, and helium. It contains a type of chemical used in cleansing.

The valency of any atom is characterized as the measure of its combining power with other atoms when it forms chemical compounds.

The valence electrons of a fluorine atom may be the number of electrons in the outermost shell, which is 7. Fluorine can easily gain one electron rather than losing 7 electrons.

Hence, its valency will come from subtracting seven electrons from eight, giving you 1. However, the correct valency is 1.

The valency of fluorine is the number of bonds that each of its atoms can form. Valency is different from the oxidation state or number of valence electrons for a given atom; they should not be confused.

As you go on in this article, you will learn more about the valency of fluorine.

What Is The Valency Of Fluorine: Electronic Configuration

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Fluorine has nine electrons organized in the two shells around the nucleus. Two electrons exist in the first shell, while 7 electrons exist in the second shell.

Its electronic configuration is 1s2, 2s2, 2p5. It is a highly reactive non-metal and has a strong propensity to gain one electron to achieve a stable electron configuration.

Its electronic configuration indicates its position on the periodic table as a member of group seventeen or VIIA.

Additionally, the atomic number of an element specifies its position in the periodic table. The number of protons in its nucleus specifies its chemical properties.

 The Valency of Fluorine and Its Valence Electrons.

According to the Bohr-Bridge technique, the outer shell of an atom (F) will have a maximum of eight electrons. Then, if the outer orbit is filled, little or no chemical activity will take place.

What Is the Valency of Fluorine? Valence electrons are the electrons in the outermost shell or energy level of an atom. Hence, the valence electron of fluorine is 7.

These valence electrons of fluorine are important in chemical reactions because they are involved in the arrangement of chemical bonds with other atoms to attain a more reliable electronic configuration.

The high reactivity of fluorine can be linked to its valence electrons, as it can easily earn an electron to form a negative ion.

What is the valency of fluorine?

Valency is quite different from its valence electrons. Valency is the combined power of an atom. The atomic number of fluorine is 9. The electronic configuration is 2, 7. The 2,7 electrons are distributed in the shells, K and L, respectively.

Hence, it has 7 valence electrons and needs only one electron to form a bond, combine with an atom to form a stable noble gas structure, or attain an octet.  Its valency is therefore 1.

For instance, fluorine can form stable ionic bonds with lithium to form LiF (lithium fluoride). Fluorine is a good leaving group in many organic reactions because of its powerful electro-negativity.

Uses Of Valency Of Fluorine

  • It aids in deducing its chemical formula.

It aids in inferring the number of atoms of fluorine that will combine with another element to form any chemical formula.

Methods of Deducing the Valency of Fluorine.

The valency of all the elements in the me group is the same. If we consider the group of fluorine (group 17 or VIIA) in the periodic table, they have only one atom remaining to have a filled outer orbit.  Hence, the elements of this group have a valency of 1.

Here are the methods for determining the valency of fluorine.

1. Octet Rule

This is one of the methods one can use to determine the valency of fluorine if the periodic table is not used.

According to the rule, atoms of an element or chemistry acquire 8 electrons from the outermost orbit either by gaining or losing electrons in whatever form of compound is present.

An atom can have a maximum of 8 electrons in its outer orbit. Hence, the stability of an atom is indicated by the presence of 8 electrons in the outer shell.

Fluorine atoms tend to receive an atom instead of losing 7 electrons to maintain their octet nature.

Conversely, an atom can lose electrons if it has 1-4 electrons in the outermost shell. Fluorine has a negative valence because it gains an atom, but if it had lost an atom, it would have been positive.

Therefore, we deduce the valency of fluorine using this rule by subtracting 7 electrons from 8, which gives 1.

2. Periodic Table

This is using a periodic table chart to calculate the valency of fluorine.

For instance, all metals like hydrogen, lithium, etc. present in column 1 have a valence of +1. Likewise, every element in column 17 has a valency of -1, like fluorine.

Note that all the noble gases are arranged in column 18. They are inactive and have a valency of 0.

Nevertheless, there is an exception to this method. Elements like copper, iron, and gold have multiple active orbits.

This exclusion is mostly seen in transitional metal, which is in columns 3–10. It is also seen in heavier elements from 11–14, lanthanides (57–71), and actinides (89–103).

3. Chemical Formulae

The valency of many transitional elements or radicals can be deduced in a specific compound by observing the way it chemically unites with elements of known valency.

In this case, the octet rule is followed, where the elements and radicals combine and try to achieve 8 electrons on the outer orbit.

For example, consider the compound NaF. The valence of Na is +1, knowing that for Na to complete the stable octet nature, it needs to lose its atom, hence the valency of F is -1. Sodium donates an electron, while fluorine accepts the electron.

This is how the valency of fluorine is deduced.

Difference between Oxidation Number and Valency of Fluorine.

The valency of fluorine is its combining capacity. It is the number of electrons it has to lose from its outer shell. The oxidation number is the charge an atom can carry.


Fluorine has a valency of 1, but its oxidation number is -1, unlike another halogen whose valency is 1 and exhibits -1, +, 1, +3, +5, and +7 oxidation states. This is because other halogens exhibit different oxidation states in vacant D- or D-orbitals, unlike fluorine, which has no vacant D-orbital.

Final Word

The valency of fluorine is its combining power. It can be deduced through the use of periodic tables and chemical formulas.

It can also be deduced through the use of the octet rule. Conclusively, the valency of fluorine is 1.

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