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You are given a hammer, a battery, a bulb, wires and a switch.

  • (a) How could you use them to distinguish between samples of metals and non-metals?
  • (b)Assess the usefulness of these tests in distinguishing between metals and non-metals.

Answer :

If the substance can be hammered to convert into sheets then it is metal if it is broken into pieces then it is non-metal. Set up the arrangement using bulb, battery, wire and switch as shown in figure. Place the substance between Point A and B if the bulb starts glowing then the substance is a Metal otherwise it is non-metal because metals are good conductor of electricity.
Generally above methods can be used to identify metals and non-metals. But there are some exceptions also for example Sodium is metal which is not malleable in fact it is brittle. Graphite allotrope of non-metal carbon is a good conductor of electricity.

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