Reactivity and Solubility of Group 2 Metals

This is a quick summary on the reactions and the solubility of the Alkaline Earth Metals

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Reaction with water

Magnesium is the least reactive of the group 2 with water and for any sort of reaction to really take place, it needs to react with steam.  The reaction is as follows:

Mg  +  H2O  ---->  MgO + H2

The other elements react with cold water with increasing vigour, to produce their hydroxides:

Ba  +  2H2O ----> Ba(OH)2  + H2

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Solubility with hydroxides

The hydroxides of group 2 increase in solubility as we go down the group:

(hydroxides = more)

Magnesium is the least soluble.  This is used in 'milk of magnesia' which helps with indigestion.  

Calcium hydroxide is used with agriculture and is used to treat soil acidity. 

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Solubility with sulphates

The solubility of the sulphates decreases as we go down the group:

(Sulphates = less)

Magnesium is the most soluble, barium is the least.

Barium sulfate is used as a 'barium meal' to make the digestive system show up on x-rays in medicine. 

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