dense silvery radioactive metal of the actinium series, used as a fuel in nuclear reactors and as an explosive in nuclear fission weapons. Plutonium only occurs in trace amounts in nature but is manufactured in nuclear reactors from uranium-238.
Plutonium was discovered in 1941 by Dr. Glenn T. Seaborg and Edwin McMillan, Kennedy, and Wahl by Deuteronomy bombardment of uranium in the 60-inch cyclotron of the Berkeley Radiation Laboratory at the University of California.
Plutonium’s color is silver
It‘s melting point is 641 degrees Celsius
Its boiling point is 3,232 degrees Celsius
Plutonium was used in several of the first atomic bombs, and is still used in nuclear weapons. The complete detonation of a kilogram of plutonium produces an explosion equivalent to over 10,000 chemical explosions.
Plutonium is also a key material in the development of nuclear power. It has been used as a source of energy on space missions, such as the Mars Curiosity Rover and the New Horizons spacecraft on its way to Pluto.
Periodic Table Information
Atomic number: 94
Atomic mass: 244
2Pu + 2H2O→ 2Pu(OH)+ H2
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