Mercury, today rather decried as poisonous and harmful to the environment, used to be called "living silver" because of its liquid form at room temperature. It was considered a symbol of eternal life and was used in many ways in medicine. Constantin Hoch introduces an element that has fascinated people for centuries. To the article about mercury on the website Fascination Chemistry
You can find out more about mercury in this video from chemistry - simplclub
Mercury is actually too toxic to play around with. But since the incomparable Sir Martyn Poliakoff did this with a Phytagoras cup that he filled with mercury, we can also just watch and enjoy the video.
Even if there are hardly any clinical thermometers with mercury left, mercury can be found in the form of energy-saving lamps in many households. Defective energy-saving lamps must not be disposed of in the normal garbage or in glass containers! They should be handed in at a collection point or at the dealer so that they are disposed of properly and no mercury gets into the environment. In addition, some parts of the lamps can be recycled.
Alloys of mercury with other metals are called amalgams. They are still in use today as dental fillings. Why: In contrast to most other materials, the amalgam used as a tooth filling expands a little when it becomes solid. So it closes the hole in the tooth very tightly. This is why amalgam fillings have a very long shelf life. Amalgams that are used for dental fillings contain only a few percent mercury. Even so, they are controversial today because of their potential health hazard.
You can hear more about mercury in the Deutschlandfunk Kultur podcast.
Why mercury Prof. Dr. Irina P. Beletskaya's favorite element is, she explains in the ChemistryViews series In My Element: Mercury.
The elements in this sub-group are zinc, cadmium, mercury and the artificially produced copernicium. Zinc and cadmium show similar properties in many areas and often occur together in minerals in nature. After its first member, it is also known as the zinc group. The zinc group is the last row of the subgroup. Their elements have a d-shell that is completely filled with electrons. The preferred oxidation number in this group is + II because only the s electrons are used for bonding.
(What was the s- and d-shell again? Read the article about the structure of the periodic table here ).
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to our brochure Chemistry of the Elements
published June 2019 with articles on 43 elements (7 MB, 160 pages)
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last modified: 10.05.2021 16:29 H from N/A