Chapter 1: Geography Is Destiny

Elijah Rosenberg


Chapter one starts off talking about how the periodic table can sometimes be confusing to people. He says for high schoolers who can understand it, it is a giant cheat sheet full of all of the information that they need. He talks about how every element is not interchangeable and moving just one thing makes the entire table fall apart. He goes on to talk about the Noble gases and the philosophers who first thought of everything as being made out of smaller particles. The author speaks of a few 1900s science experiments that involve cooling liquids and solids to create superfluids and zero electrical resistance. Then he goes on to talk about how each element is the purest substance of what anything is. He says all elements could not be broken down without changing the substance. He says particles act this way because of electrons and atoms need a certain number to be satisfied. The author says atoms fill their lower levels first and then they fill their outer shell. They will do anything to fill it. Noble gases don't need to be filled. He says the column on the west-most side is the most reactive because they have the most to fill. It is impossible to find a pure lanthanide in nature, the nucleus make up the majority of the mass. He starts to give the life story of a woman named Maria Goeppert, she was a student who couldn't seem to find a university that would accept her and after a long time got a PH.D. After losing her job several times in the Depression she drifted from school to school to find a new job after a while she got a job in physics. She proved atoms do have shells and her theory is accepted by scientists everywhere. He finishes the chapter by saying the columns of elements are more closely related then the rows. This chapter has six elements; Helium, Boron, Antimony, Thulium, Oxygen, and Holmium.


#2 Mass-4 Period-1 Group-18 Electron Config.- 1s^2. Helium is a noble gas and a nonmetal. This element would be found in small amounts in the atmosphere (5.2 ppm). Uses- Helium is used in cooling the Large Hadron Collider and in superconducting magnets for MRIs. Making Helium a very important element. Helium was first discovered as a wavelength coming off of the Sun, it was named after the Greek word for Sun, Helios.


#5 Mass-10.81 period-2 group-13 Electron config.- 1s^2 2s^2 2p^1. Boron is a metalloid and is found in small amounts in the atmosphere and the Earth's crust. Boron is used to ignite rocket fuel and in green pyrotechnics. Boron was discovered by Sir Humphry Davy and was named after Borax witch it was found in. Boron is used in some glazes.


#8 Mass-16 period-2 group-16 Electron Config.- 1s^2 2s^2 2p^4. Oxygen is a nonmetal classified in the other nonmetals category. Oxygen is the third most abundant element in the atmosphere and is found in the form O2. Oxygen is essential to life in that animals and fish breath it in and it is in water which is the basis of all life. Oxygen was discovered by Carl Wilhelm Scheele. Oxygen is one of the most essential elements for life on Earth.


#69 Mass-169 period-6 it's Electron Config.- 1s^2 2s^2 2p^6 3s^2 3p^6 4s^2 3d^10 4p^6 4d^10 4f^13 5s^2 5p^6 6s^2. Thulium is in the lanthanide category. Thulium can be used to create lasers. Thulium was discovered by Per Teodor Cleave in 1879. He named this element after Thule, and Ancient Greek name associated with Iceland. Thulium is the least abundant of the rare earth metals.


#67 Mass-165 period-6 Electron Config.- 1s^2 2s^2 2p^6 3s^2 3p^6 4s^2 3d^10 4p^6 4d^10 4f^11 5s^2 5p^6 6s^2. Holmium is in the Lanthanide category. Holmium is used to produce magnets. Holmium was named after the Latin word for Stockholm by Marc Delafontaine. Holmium is soft and resists corrosion.


#51 Mass- 121.76 Period-5 Group-15 Electron config.- 1s^2 2s^2 2p^6 3s^2 3p^6 4s^2 3d^10 4p^6 5s^2 4d^10 5p^3 . Antimony is a metalloid. Found in nature as Stibnite (Sb2S3). Antimony is often found in magnets. Andreas Libavius in 1615. Antimony was given it's name from the ancient Egyptians. An interesting fact is that the Egyptians may have used this element in making vases.

Summary of Elements

The elements listed above are very important to the world today. Especially Helium and Oxygen, those two are just essential to life itself. Helium in stars and Oxygen in what we breath and drink. As for the other elements, three are needed in modern technology like Thulium, Antimony, and Holmium. The other is used in pottery and glazes. Without elements like these it would be difficult for life to even exist. So the importance goes way farther than it would first seem.


THe only source i used for this info was I did not get any information out of the book it was all from here.