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|Atomic Number:||83||Atomic Symbol:||Bi|
|Atomic Weight:||208.9804||Electron Configuration:||2-8-18-32-18-5|
|Melting Point:||271.3oC||Boiling Point:||1560oC|
|Description:||Brittle white metal with a pink tint|
|Uses:||Main use is in pharmaceuticals and in low melting point alloys|
History(Ger. Weisse Masse, white mass; later Wisuth and Bisemutum) In
early times bismuth was confused with tin and lead. Claude Geoffroy the Younger
showed it to be distinct from lead in 1753.
SourcesThe most important ores are bismuthinite or bismuth glance and
bismite. Peru, Japan, Mexico, Bolivia, and Canada are major bismuth producers.
Much of the bismuth produced in the U.S. is obtained as a by-product in refining
lead, copper, tin, silver, and gold ores.
- It is a white crystalline, brittle metal with a pinkish tinge. It occurs
- Bismuth is the most diamagnetic of all metals, and the thermal conductivity
is lower than any metal, except mercury.
- It has a high electrical resistance, and has the highest Hall effect of any
metal (i.e., greatest increase in electrical resistance when placed in a
- "Bismanol" is a permanent magnet of high coercive force, made of MnBi, by
the U.S. Naval Surface Weapons Center.
- Bismuth expands 3.32% on solidification.
- This property makes bismuth alloys particularly suited to the making of
sharp castings of objects subject to damage by high temperatures.
- With other metals such as tin, cadmium, etc., bismuth forms low-melting
alloys which are extensively used for safety devices in fire detection and
- Bismuth is used in producing malleable irons and is finding use as a
catalyst for making acrylic fibers.
- When bismuth is heated in air it burns with a blue flame, forming yellow
fumes of the oxide.
- The metal is also used as a thermocouple material, and has found application
as a carrier for U235 or U233 fuel in nuclear reactors.
- Its soluble salts are characterized by forming unsoluble basic salts on the
addition of water, a property sometimes used in detection work.
- Bismuth oxychloride is used extensively in cosmetics.
- Bismuth subnitrate and subcarbonate are used in medicine.