Physical Properties of Non Metals

We interact with various non metals daily

Like carbon in pencil leads

Or Phosphorus in matchsticks

Or the Oxygen we breathe in

These are classified as non-metals.

Notice that the despite both being nonmetals, carbon in pencils is a solid but oxygen in air is a gas

In fact non metals can exist as solid, liquid as well as gas at room temperature.

Non metals that exist in solid form are carbon, phosphorus etc.

Bromine exists in the form of a liquid.

While oxygen, nitrogen, etc. exist in the form of gases.

All of these non metals show some common physical properties

Non metals are brittle, they shatter into pieces on hitting hardly.

Non metals are non malleable which means they cannot be made into sheets.

They are non ductile which means they cannot be stretched to make wires.

On hitting hard they do not ring, so they are not sonorous.

Non metals have no shine. That’s why we wear jewelleries of gold instead of carbon.

Non metals are a poor conductors of electricity, except for graphite.


Non metals exist in all the three states of matter.

Non metals are non malleable, i.e, they can’t be made into sheets.

They are non ductile, i.e, cannot be made into wires.

They are not sonorous, i.e, they do not ring.

They are non lustrous i.e, they are not shiny.

They are brittle, i.e, they break down into pieces.

They are a bad conductor of electricity, except for graphite.

The End