Thursday, 2 June 2011

Strontium in Strontian

Britain has played a major role in the discovery of elements.

Yet only one element is named after a place in Britain.

That's right - one!

Compare that with the village of Ytterby, Sweden, which gave its name to four elements - Ytterbium, Yttrium, Erbium and Terbium.

So, where is this lone UK representative on the periodic table?

Step forward Strontian... a tiny village in the western highlands of Scotland.

It was in a lead mine here that a new mineral was found and dubbed "Strontiantite".

Later an undiscovered element was extracted from the mineral and given the name Strontium.

I paid a visit to the village a couple of weeks ago and visited local archivist George Fox.

That allowed us to finally update our Strontium video on The Periodic Table of Videos.

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