Look, before I even start talking about yttrium
, let's cut the crap. I know all you want is the 'down and dirty
.' The really juicy stories and inside information about yttrium. You don't care that yttrium's symbol is "Y
", its atomic number
is 39, and that its atomic weight
is 88.90589. You don't give a rat's ass that its density
is 4.47 g/cm3 (at 293 K) or that its molar volume
) is 19.8 cm3/mol. You want to know all the dirty little secrets
about yttrium (because you are a perv). You want to know the answers to questions such as
Yttrium is a transitional metal
. It has 39 proton
s and 50 neutrons. The electron configuration
(meaning it's like krypton
, but with an electron
in 4d (the d
atomic orbital of the fourth energy level) and 2 electrons in 5s).
Yttrium's melting point is 1799 K (1526 °C) and its boiling point is 3609 K (or 3336 °C).
The ionization potentials are as follows (skip this part if you already know it by heart):
1st level: 600 kJ/mol,
2nd level: 1180 kJ/mol,
3rd level: 1980 kJ/mol,
4th level: 5847kJ/mol,
5th level: 7430 kJ/mol,
6th level: 8970 kJ/mol.
The rest are over 10000 kJ/mol, which you're probably never going to have. Accept it and move on.
Yttrium is stable
in air. It is silvery-metallic in appearance. Turnings
of the metal combust at around 400 °C, and if yttrium is divided finely it becomes unstable in air. Yttrium is found in rare earth minerals
and in uranium
ore, but is not found naturally as a free element. It is commercially manufactured from monazite
, in a reaction with calcium.
Yttrium's common oxidation state is +3. This little piece of information has been a source of joy to many. Its vapour pressure is 5.31 Pa at 1799 K.
To produce yttrium in the safety (and comfort) of your own home, obtain some yttrium fluoride
, and react it with calcium
. You get:
2YF3 + 3Ca -> 2Y + 3 Ca3F2
It is of course, of unestimable interest to know that, naturally, yttrium exists as only one isotope, Y-89. The other isotopes are unstable, all but four (Y-87, Y-88, Y-90 and Y-91) having a half-life of less than a day.
Due to public demand, I will list several isotopes with their respective half-lives:
Isotope | Half life
Y-85 | 2.6 h
Y-86 | 14.74 h
Y-87 | 3.35 d
Y-88 | 106.6 d
Y-89 | Stable
Y-90 | 2.67 d
Y-91 | 58.5 d
Y-92 | 3.54 h
Y-93 | 10.2 h
Yttrium was discovered by Johan Gadolin
in 1794. It was discovered in a mine near Ytterby
, a village in Sweden. This little village (where, at the time of writing, the sky appears to be overcast
according to a prominent weather site, and the temperatures a not-so-warm 14 °C (not to be used for navigational purposes
)), is not too far from Stockholm
. In this mine, Gadolin discovered Yttria
(as you can see, they were very creative name-wise). Incidentally, due to a severe vowel shortage, Ytterby also gave its name to three other other element
, but that is the subject of another (and no less exciting) node. In 1828, Friedrich Wohler
isolated yttrium oxide, and in 1843 Mosander
showed that yttria was actually a combination of oxides of three elements, yttrium, erbium and terbium (good times, good times
). Today, yttria refers only to yttrium oxide.
Quite a large amount of yttrium is found on the moon.
Despite the fact that it is not a lanthanide or an actinide, it is considered a rare-earth metal because of its similarity and natural proximity to the lanthanides.
Yttrium's main use is in colour televisions. YVO4 europium
s are used to give the red colour in television tubes.
Other than that, yttrium is used to increase strength in aluminium and magnesium alloys, is used in lasers (that is always cool) and as a catalyst for ethylene polymerization. Yttrium oxide is used to produce yttrium-iron garnets, which are very effective microwave filters.
99.9% pure yttrium is currently going for about $140/kg, less if you order a large amount. Several sites say the price is $75/oz, but hey, my figure is a quote from an actual dealer (true fact, and not as interesting as it would seem).
Flush eyes with warm water for 15 minutes. If irritation persists
, seek medical attention
Take deep breaths of fresh air and avoid further inhalation
of material. If irritation persists, seek medical attention.
(The previous two items are actual quotes from a safety brochure on yttrium).
YES. YTTRIUM TASTES LIKE FUCKING CHICKEN.
- www.webelements.com/webelements/ elements/text/Y/key.html
I did it. You can do it too!