Electrical Conductivity

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A series of free IGCSE Chemistry Activities and Experiments (Cambridge IGCSE Chemistry).

The key test to distinguish between metals and non-metals is electrical conductivity. A simple circuit is set up using either a light bulb or an ammeter. Power is supplied by batteries or a power pack. Examine a range of solid elements and alloys including magnesium, zinc, tin, iron, nickel, roll sulfur, graphite, brass and solder.

This video tests the electrical conductivity of some metals and non-metals: Copper, Carbon, Magnesium, Aluminum, Sulfur, Zinc, Silicon

The following video tests whether the graphite in a pencil lead conducts electricity.

Does liquid mercury conduct electricity?


  1. What types of material conduct electricity?
  2. What common structural feature is present in all the samples that conduct electricity?


  • Show Answers
    1. Metals and graphite
    2. They all contain free electrons that can be made to flow in one direction.

Try the free Mathway calculator and problem solver below to practice various math topics. Try the given examples, or type in your own problem and check your answer with the step-by-step explanations.
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