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Element Fact
Cesium is used in atomic clock. As in 1999, the best clock is accurate to a second in 20 million years.

Vanadium, V

vanadium sample

Atomic number: 23
Atomic mass: 50.9415(1)
Natural abundance: 136 ppm
50V (49.947163) - 0.25%
51V (50.943964) - 99.75%

History and Production

The name was given after the Scandinavian goddess, vanadis. It was named such due to its multicolored compounds. The element was first discovered by A.M. del Rio in 1801 from Mexico. It was, however, incorrectly suggested by H.V. Collett-Desotils that what del Rio has obtained was lead chromate. Subsequently the element was rediscovered by N.G. Sefstrom. Much of the metal being produced by the reduction of vanadium pentoxide (V2O5) with calcium. It is used in producing spring, highspeed tool steels. It is used as an addictive to steel, which when reacts with carbon in steel forms V4C3. This increases steel resistance to wear. The pentoxide compound is used in ceramics and as a catalyst.

Physical Data

Pure vanadium is a bright silvery metal. It is soft and ductile. Resistance to acids and alkalis attacks, the metal has good structural strength and a low fission neutron cross section.

Interatomic distance: 262.2 pm
Melting point: 1910C
Boiling point: 3407C
Thermal conductivity/Wm-1K-1: 30.7 (27C)
Density/kgm-3: 6110 (20C), 5550 (m.p.)

Standard Thermodynamic Data (atomic gas)

Enthalpy of formation: 514.2 kJ/mol
Gibbs free energy of formation: 754.4 kJ/mol
Entropy: 182.3 J/mol K
Heat capacity: 26.0 J/mol K

Electronic data

Electronic configuration: [Ar] 3d3 4s2
Term symbol: 4F3/2
Electron affinity: 50.6548 kJ/mol   Electronegativity (Pauline): 1.63
Ionization energy (first, second, third): 650.910, 1414.476, 2828.08 kJ/mol

Chemical properties

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