The first semi-metal to exist in the universe.

Beryllium is often mislabled as a metal because it does not lie on the semi-metal line, though it has the classic characteristics of a semi-metal. The reason it doesn't lie on the line dividing metals from non-metals is because the d-block is placed between it and the semi-metal line. Beryllium is steel-grey in color and is found in Group IIa, also known as the alkaline-earth metals. It was discovered in the oxide form BeO by a scientist named Nicolas-Louis Vauquelin. It's oxidation number is +2. Beryllium is an anomaly in such compounds as beryllium oxide (BeO) and beryllium fluoride (BeF2) because it does not obey the octet-duet rule, and contains only 4 valence electrons.

Beryllium is used as a low-percentage component of hard alloys. It is found in structural, thermal and nuclear applications.

(From the Latin beryllus, "beryl") A hard, silver-white, metallic chemical element, one of the alkaline-earth metals, found only in combination with others. It forms strong, hard, lightweight alloys with several metals that are used for springs; electrical contacts; in X-ray lithography; and as structural material for high performance aircraft, missiles, spacecraft (such as in the U.S. space shuttle), and satellites. Beryllium is also used as a moderator or reflector in nuclear reactors. It is found mostly in minerals like beryl and chrysoberyl.

Symbol: Be
Atomic number: 4
Atomic weight: 9.012182
Density (at room temperature and pressure): 1.848 g/cc
Melting point: 1,287°C
Boiling point: 2,470°C
Valence: +2
Ground state electron configuration: [He]2s2
Symbol: Be
Atomic Number: 4
Boiling Point: 3243 K
Melting Point: 1560 K
Density at 300 K: 1.85 g/cm3
Covalent radius: 0.90
Atomic radius: 1.40
Atomic volume: 5.0 cm3/mol
First ionization potental: 9.322 V
Specific heat capacity: 1.825 J g-1 K-1
Thermal conductivity: 200 W m-1 K-1
Electrical conductivity: 25 106 Ω-1 m-1
Heat of fusion: 11.71 kJ/mol
Heat of vaporization: 297 kJ/mol
Electronegativity: 1.57 (Pauling's)

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Beryllium is a truly amazing metal (or metalloid, as some like to call it). Not only is it extremely light, it is elastic yet stiff. It also has an extremely high heating value, yielding specific impulses of up to 750 seconds when coupled with liquid oxygen in a rocket. It is extracted from the mineral beryl. The two disadvantages of beryllium are that it is extremely poisonous, and very expensive, costing around $150/pound.

Be*ryl"li*um (), n. [NL.] Chem.

A metallic element found in the beryl. See Glucinum.


© Webster 1913.

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