A halogen is any of a group of chemically related, highly reactive, nonmetallic elements (see nonmetal) that fall in group VIIA of the periodic table. The halogens are:
The typical compounds of the halogens are the halides (containing negative ions of the type F- (fluoride) and Cl- (chloride)), with oxidation number -1; compounds with positive oxidation numbers (usually 1, 3, 5, and 7) are also formed, with increasing stability down the group. The halogens react vigorously with almost all other elements and with organic compounds because they require only one electron to achieve a stable noble gas configuration; for this reason they always occur combined in nature. The name "halogen" means "salt-producer."
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