Holmium (Ho)

By: Tanyon Loose

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History

Holmium is a rare earth metal discovered in 1876 by Per Theodor Cleve in Sweeden and named Holmium, after his city of birth Stockholm (In Latin Stockholm is Holmia). He discovered it when investigating a piece of yttrium with unidentified metals in it, One of these metals turned out to be Holmium.


Holmium was also discovered by Marc Delafontaine and Louis Soret, but they did not extract the element they had found until after Cleve

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.............................................................Per Teodor Cleve...............................................................

Atomic Composition

Holmium has 67 protons and 98 neutrons, giving it a mass number of 165.
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Properties

At room temperature Holmium is a bright and silvery metal, and has a density of 8.795 g/cc. Holmium is always found as a solid on Earth. Holmium has a boiling point of 2973 Kelvin and a melting point of 1747 Kelvin. Holmium is relatively soft for a metal and is fairly malleable. Holmium's chemical properties are not really important to us, but its most important property is the fact that it is extremely magnetic. Holmium is the most magnetic element out of all 114.

Uses

Holmium has very few uses due to the fact that it only has 1 useful property being its magnetivity, one of its most important uses is in medical imaging and a newly found use in surgery where holmium lasers are used to treat kidney stones and various other medical conditions


Another use is creating strong magnets and magnetic fields


One other use is in nuclear reactors to keep chain reactions under control, it can do this because it can absorb neutrons easily


It is also used in some components of Microwaves and coloring glass yellow

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Other Facts

Holmium is not a very easy element to obtain, it is only found in a few types of rocks and is hard to separate from other rare earth metals. Then it has to be extracted through ion exchange.


Holmium costs $10 per gram to buy

Sources

Element Card