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My textbook says the following about metallic bonding:

The metal copper has one valence electron. The valence electrons of nearby copper atoms are shared in a similar way to covalently bonded solids, but it is not possible for seven close copper atoms to come together to gain a noble-gas configuration of valence electrons as occurs in a covalent bond. Instead, the electron sharing that occurs in metals is not as restricted as in the covalent solid.

The problem is that this section doesn't adequately (in sufficient detail) explain why it is not possible for seven close copper atoms to come together to gain a noble-gas configuration of valence electrons as occurs in a covalent bond.

I would greatly appreciate it if people could please take the time to clarify this in further detail.

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  • $\begingroup$ It is not possible for any element. Why should be copper the exception ? Or, why do you think it should be possible ? $\endgroup$ – Poutnik Mar 31 at 7:31
  • $\begingroup$ @Poutnik Well the textbook, as I wrote, says that such a thing occurs in covalent bonds, so either the textbook is incorrect or such a thing is possible. $\endgroup$ – The Pointer Mar 31 at 7:34
  • $\begingroup$ Sure, but too many is too many. More than 6 bonds is very rare, and it never happens for elements. It requires a big central cation and small coordinating anions. It is very challenging for difficulties in geometry, orbital overlapping and saturation of bonding abilities. $\endgroup$ – Poutnik Mar 31 at 7:38
  • $\begingroup$ @Poutnik But notice that it says "as occurs in a covalent bond", so the author implies that it happens in certain cases. Or is the author incorrect? $\endgroup$ – The Pointer Mar 31 at 7:40
  • $\begingroup$ It is rather misinterpretation. There is not said an atom cannot reach for total count of 8 shared electrons. E.g. fluorine 7+1, oxygen 6 + 2*1, nitrogen 5+3*1. But no element bonds with itself by 1+7*1 pattern. $\endgroup$ – Poutnik Mar 31 at 7:44

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