Name that element! This element can be a real gem. It helps scientists see distant planets, and allows hang gliders to lift off. If you treat this element with care, you'll be helping to clean up Earth. What is it? Follow these eight clues to find out.CLUE 1
On its own, the mystery element is a soft, lightweight metal. But finding its pure form in nature is mission impossible. Although it's the most abundant metal in Earth's crust, it's always found in compounds (two or more elements that are chemically combined). That's because the smallest unit of this element, or its atom, is highly reactive. It combines easily with other atoms. Most rocks contain compounds of this element.
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Ancient Minoans dyed clothing with natural materials such as plants, but these colorants didn't stick well to fabric. So the civilization (3000 to 1000 B.C.) used mordants, or substances used to bind dye to cloth. The most common mordant mordant (môr`dənt) [Fr.,=biting], substance used in dyeing to fix certain dyes (mordant dyes) in cloth. Either the mordant (if it is colloidal) or a colloid produced by the mordant adheres to the fiber, attracting and fixing the colloidal was made of the mystery element plus potassium, sulfur, and oxygen. The fabric was first treated with this substance. Then, dye bound to the mordant to create lasting, vibrant fashions.
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When a compound made of the mystery element and oxygen is exposed to high temperatures deep inside Earth, clear crystals of corundum--the second-hardest natural mineral--form. If traces of the element chromium are present, the crystals turn red, forming a pricey gem called ruby. In 1902, Auguste Verneuil, a French chemist, exposed a powdered form of the compound and chromium to scorching scorch
v. scorched, scorch·ing, scorch·es
1. To burn superficially so as to discolor or damage the texture of. See Synonyms at burn1.
2. flames. The result: synthetic rubies, explains gemologist Hanna Cook-Wallace of Studio Jewelers in Wisconsin. Hint: Chromium is heavier, or has a higher atomic mass atomic mass, the mass of a single atom, usually expressed in atomic mass units , than the mystery element.
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1. A bag for holding money.
2. moneybags (used with a sing. or pl. verb) Wealth.
3. moneybags (used with a sing. verb) A rich, often extravagant person.
In the 1850s, guests of Emperor Napoleon III of France dined with cutlery made from this metal. At the time, the pure element cost more than gold because it was so hard to separate from its ore, or metal-containing rock. The element lost its precious-metal status in 1886 when scientists found an easier method to extract it. They used electrolysis electrolysis (ĭlĕktrŏl`əsĭs), passage of an electric current through a conducting solution or molten salt that is decomposed in the process. , sending electric currents to break the bonds linking the atoms that make up the mystery element-containing compound.
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It's a main weapon in fighting underarm un·der·arm
Located, placed, or used under the arm.
The armpit. sweat. Some antiperspirants contain a compound made of the mystery element and chlorine, a member of the same period, or row, on the periodic table. When sweat reacts with the antiperspirant antiperspirant /an·ti·per·spir·ant/ (-per´spir-ant) inhibiting or preventing perspiration, or an agent that does this.
n. , the compound precipitates. That means that tiny particles of the compound separate from the antiperspirant mixture as solid particles. The particles move into the openings of your sweat glands (Anat.) sudoriferous glands. See under Sudoriferous.
See also: Sweat , plugging them so that sweat can't escape.
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STUCK ON YOU
To help scientists see distant objects, some telescopes contain mirrors coated with this metal. To form the coating, the mirror and metal are placed inside a vacuum, or airless space. When melted in a vacuum, the metal evaporates, or turns into vapor. This vapor covers the mirror's surface. And when temperatures cool, the vapor solidifies as a metal coating on the mirror, explains Andrew R. Barron, a chemistry professor at Rice University.
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Hang-glider frames must be sturdy, yet light enough to set sail (Naut.) to unfurl or spread the sails; hence, to begin a voyage.
See also: Sail through the air. While metals such as iron and zinc may make strong frames, they are too heavy for liftoff. The solution: Melt in some of the mystery metal, which is light and soft, to create an alloy. The mixed-metal product has some of the toughness of the strong metals. "And it has the lightness of [the mystery element]," says Barron.
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The act or an instance of rebroadcasting a recorded movie or a recorded television performance.
tr.v. re·ran , re·run, re·run·ning, re·runs
To present a rerun of.
By recycling one drink container made of this element, which has 13 protons, you'll save enough energy to power your television for three hours. That's because melting the containers to make new ones uses only 5 percent of the energy it takes to extract this mystery element from its ore. Saving energy is good news: Less pollutant gets spewed into the air.
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Anatomy of an Element
X.XXXX--Average atomic mass
ATOMIC NUMBER atomic number, often represented by the symbol Z, the number of protons in the nucleus of an atom, as well as the number of electrons in the neutral atom. Atoms with the same atomic number make up a chemical element. equals the number of protons (positively charged particles) in an atom's nucleus, or center. Every element contains a different number of protons, and so has a unique atomic number. In a neutral atom, the number of protons and the number of electrons (negatively charged particles) are equal.
ATOMIC MASS equals the number of protons plus the number of neutrons (uncharged particles) found in a single atom of an element. The atom's mass is in its nucleus, which houses both protons and neutrons.
It's Your Choice
Test your chemistry IQ! Answer the following questions about elements and the periodic table.
1. Name that element! --
2. Two or more atoms are joined by
3. Which of the following elements is a metal?
A Silicon (Si)
B Argon argon (är`gŏn) [Gr.,=inert], gaseous chemical element; symbol Ar; at. no. 18; at. wt. 39.948; m.p. −189.2°C;; b.p. −185.7°C;; density 1.784 grams per liter at STP; valence 0. (Ar)
C Hydrogen (H)
D Francium francium (frăn`sēəm) [from France], radioactive chemical element; symbol Fr; at. no. 87; mass no. of most stable isotope 223; m.p. about 27°C; (estimated); b.p. 677°C; (estimated); sp. gr. unknown; valence +1. (Fr)
4. Which of the following is not found in group 13?
A Boron boron (bōr`ŏn) [New Gr. from borax], chemical element; symbol B; at. no. 5; at. wt. 10.81; m.p. about 2,300°C;; sublimation point about 2,550°C;; sp. gr. 2.3 at 25°C;; valence +3. (B)
B Gallium (Ga)
C Indium (In)
D Polonium polonium (pəlō`nēəm), radioactive chemical element; symbol Po; at. no. 84; mass no. of most stable isotope 209; m.p. 254°C;; b.p. 962°C;; sp. gr. about 9.4; valence +2 or +4. (Po)
5. Which of the following is not found in the same period as the others?
A Chromium (Cr)
B Tungsten (W)
C Nickel (Ni)
D Arsenic (As)
6. Of the following elements, which is the heaviest, solid metal?
A Iron (Fe)
B Zirconium zirconium (zərkō`nēəm), metallic chemical element; symbol Zr; at. no. 40; at. wt. 91.22; m.p. about 1,852°C;; b.p. 4,377°C;; sp. gr. 6.5 at 20°C;; valence +2, +3, or +4. (Zr)
C Mercury (Hg)
D Astatine astatine (ăs`tətēn,–tĭn) [Gr.,=unstable], semimetallic radioactive chemical element; symbol At; at. no. 85; at. wt. of most stable isotope 210; m.p. 302°C; (estimated); b.p. (At)
1. aluminum 2. c 3. d 4. d 5. b 6. b
KITCHEN AID: In its pure form, this element is a shiny, silvery metal. It is commonly found in kitchen products.
DID YOU KNOW?
* Aluminum was originally called "aluminium." That was the accepted spelling in the United States until 1925, when the American Chemical Society The American Chemical Society (ACS) is a learned society (professional association) based in the United States that supports scientific inquiry in the field of chemistry. Founded in 1876 at New York University, the ACS currently has over 160,000 members at all degree-levels and in officially changed it to "aluminum." Many European countries still refer to the element by its original name.
* Used aluminum cans can be recycled and returned to store shelves as new containers in as little as two months. CRITICAL THINKING:
* What are the pros and cons pros and cons
the advantages and disadvantages of a situation [Latin pro for + con(tra) against] of using aluminum?
MATH: Keep tabs of how many hours of television your family watches, as well as how many aluminum cans of beverages your family consumes, in one week. If recycling one can could help save enough energy to power your television for three hours, calculate the following: By recycling that week's collection of cans, the saved energy could power what percentage of the week's television-watching time?
* For basic information about aluminum, visit: www.webelements.com/webelements/elements/text/ Al/key.html
* For a student-friendly page on recycling aluminum cans, visit: www.recycleyourcans.org/
DIRECTIONS: Match the word(s) in the left column with the correct phrase in the right column. -- 1. compound a. space with air removed -- 2. reactive b. use of electric currents to break atomic bonds -- 3. mordant c. mixed-metal product -- 4. corundum d. substance used to bind dye to cloth -- 5. electrolysis e. two or more elements that are chemically combined -- 6. precipitate f. separate from a mixture as a solid particle -- 7. vacuum g. second-hardest natural mineral -- 8. alloy h. combines easily with other atoms
1.e 2. h 3. d 4. g 5. b 6. f 7. a 8. c