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What is ruthenium?

Ruthenium

The ruthenium is a chemical element metal of the periodic table. It is a very rare metal to find, with a hard consistency , a grayish- white color and a member of the platinum family . It is usually used for hardener , in the electronics industry and in the manufacture of electrical contacts that are resistant to water.

Ruthenium

  • Symbol : Ru
  • Atomic number : 44
  • Group: 8

What is ruthenium?

The ruthenium is a chemical element metal of the periodic table. It is a very rare metal to find, with a hard consistency , a grayish- white color and a member of the platinum family . It is usually used for hardener , in the electronics industry and in the manufacture of electrical contacts that are resistant to water.

  • Ruthenium characteristics
  • History
  • Who discovered ruthenium
  • Properties
  • What is it for
  • Where is it located

Ruthenium characteristics

  • Its  symbol and atomic number  are respectively: Ru, 44.
  • Its atomic mass is: 101.07 u, and its electron configuration is [K Kr] 4d75s1.
  • Its electronegativity is 2.2 and its oxidation state is 2, 3, 4, 6, 8.
  • It can be found in a solid state . With a density of 12370 kg / m 3 .
  • Its melting point is 2607 K (2334 ° C) and its boiling point is 4423 K (4150 ° C).
  • It does not play any biological role within nature.

History

The name of the element comes from the Latin word ” Ruthenia ” which means Russia, since the platinum minerals were originally from the Ural Mountains in Russia. The initial discovery of ruthenium was originally thought to have occurred in 1828, when the Swedish chemist Jons Jacob Berzelius and the Russian chemist Gottfried W. Osann examined the residues of raw platinum minerals after dissolving them in aqua regia. which was a concentrated solution of hydrochloric and nitric acids. Osann believed that there were three new metals in these residues, which he called pluranium, polynium, and ruthenium. Berzelius, however, did not believe much in this new theory. Some time later, in the year 1844, in Kazan, Russia, Karl K. Klaus repeated Osann’s work to try to clarify the results that had been obtained. At that time he managed to show that there was only one new metal present in the waste. He thus decided to keep Osann’s ruthenium name for this new metal.

Who discovered ruthenium

It was discovered by the chemist and scientist Karl Ernst Claus in 1844, who by doing some experiments managed to observe that platinum oxide contained a new metal, obtaining through his tests six grams of ruthenium from the part of platinum that is insoluble in aqua regia. .

Properties

  • Ruthenium is a suspected carcinogen and its compounds cause large spots on the skin. Ruthenium tetroxide ( RuO4 ) is considered a highly toxic chemical .
  • It is a very strange white metal , its consistency is completely hard , lustrous, very brittle and has a silvery white color that cannot be stained when it is at room temperature.
  • As is normal within transition metals, ruthenium can exist in many oxidation states , the most common being oxidation states II, III, and IV.
  • Metal is unaffected by air, water, and acids.
  • It is capable of reacting with alkali molten and halogens and may oxidize so explosive .
  • It has catalytic properties ; for example, hydrogen sulfide can be split by light in the presence of an aqueous suspension of cadmium sulfide particles loaded with ruthenium dioxide.

What is it for

Some of the applications that can be given are the following:

  • As it is highly effective in hardening palladium and platinum, it is regularly used in the alloys of these two metals, which in turn are used in making electrical contacts as they have a high resistance to wear.
  • It can be incorporated into alloys with titanium to increase resistance to corrosion .
  • Like other elements of the platinum group, it can be used as a catalyst in different processes.
  • Hydrogen sulfide, H2S, can be decomposed by light through the use of ruthenium oxide in an aqueous suspension of CdS particles, which can be very useful in the removal of H2S from oil refineries and other industrial processes.
  • Some modern studies suggest that some compounds that ruthenium possesses could have an antitumor effect .

Where is it located

It can be found freely in nature, and is often found with other metals that belong to the platinum group . Commercially, it is obtained from pentlandite , which is an iron nickel sulfide, which contains small amounts of ruthenium. It can also be extracted from spent nuclear fuel; however, if obtained in this way, it will contain radioactive isotopes , which tends to have some risks. After being obtained, ruthenium should be stored safely for at least ten years until the radioactive isotopes have decomposed.

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