If a transition metal can lose electrons so easily, then after it has been used for a conductor for x amount of time, why doesn't it fall apart? If electricity can flow through it because of loose electrons, why doesn't the wired disintegrate. Are there that many electrons that can be spared in a piece of metal?


The metal is not being used as a source of electrons, it is being used as a means to transport electrons from one place to another. When you hook a battery up to a circuit, the potential difference across the wire (created by the chemicals in the battery) causes the electrons to flow from the negative end of the battery and into the wire. As these electrons enter the wire, electrons are simultaneously being pushed out the other end of the wire, and into the positive end of the battery. The wire is always neutrally charged.

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  • $\begingroup$ Isn't it the means because it has so many electrons that are delocalised? $\endgroup$ – johnny Sep 23 '16 at 21:18
  • $\begingroup$ @johnny it is because the electrons are delocalized, yes, though it doesn't have anything to do with how many there are. Conductivity is an intrinsic property. $\endgroup$ – ringo Sep 23 '16 at 21:22

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