Magnesium | Properties | Uses | Facts - Elements and Compounds


Thursday, March 16, 2023

Magnesium | Properties | Uses | Facts

Properties Uses and Facts about Magnesium

    What is Magnesium

    Magnesium metal is classified as an alkaline earth metal, and chemically it is an element. Magnesium is a silver-white colored metal. Magnesium has the symbol (Mg), atomic number 12 and atomic mass 24.305 amu. An atom of magnesium has 12 electrons, 12 protons, 12 neutrons and 3 energy levels. In the Periodic Table, Magnesium is located in Group 2, Period 3 and Block (S). The density of magnesium is 1.738 grams per cubic centimeter. Magnesium is found in the solid state at room temperature, with a melting point of 650 °C (1202 °F) and a boiling point of 1090 °C (1994 °F).

    Magnesium was discovered by English chemist Sir Humphry Davy in 1808.
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    Properties of Magnesium

    • Magnesium is a silver-white colored metal.
    • Magnesium is a very inflammable metal, it can be easily burnt. When it burns, it emits very bright white light and heat of 3000 degree Celsius.
    • A magnesium fire cannot be extinguished with water and carbon-dioxide gas. When water and carbon-dioxide gas are poured on the burning magnesium, the magnesium starts burning even more rapidly by taking the oxygen present in it and it explodes.
    • When exposed to oxygen, magnesium forms a layer of oxide, which protects it from atmospheric damage.
    • Magnesium is a chemically very reactive element, so it is not found in nature in its pure state.
    • Magnesium produces hydrogen gas when it comes in contact with water. In cold water this reaction is slow, while in hot water this reaction is very fast.
    • Magnesium is a good conductor of electricity.
    • Magnesium is a non magnetic metal.

    Uses of Magnesium

    • Magnesium is essential for life, without magnesium photosynthesis cannot be possible in plants.
    • An adult person needs 250 to 350 mg of magnesium per day. In the human body, magnesium is essential for protein formation, for strong bones and for the functioning of a number of enzymes.
    • Magnesium is used in alloying with aluminium, zinc, manganese, silicon and copper to improve the mechanical properties of these metals. These alloys are light in weight and strong, so they are used in aeronautical, aerospace, electronic and automobile industries.
    • Magnesium is a light and strong metal, so it is used in the manufacture of cameras, laptops, mobiles, aeroplanes, rockets, missiles, etc.
    • Magnesium is added to molten iron and steel to remove sulphur.
    • Magnesium oxide is used to make heat-resistant bricks for furnaces.
    • Magnesium is used in fireworks.
    • Magnesium carbonate is used in the manufacture of some types of paint and ink.
    • Optical lenses are coated with a thin layer of magnesium fluoride to reduce glare and reflections.
    • Magnesium compounds are widely used in agriculture.
    • Magnesium is also used in the manufacture of some medicines.

    Interesting facts about Magnesium

    • Magnesium is the eighth most abundant element in the universe.
    • Magnesium is the seventh most abundant element on Earth.
    • About 1.3 billion kg of magnesium is found in one cubic kilometer of seawater.
    • About 20 grams of magnesium is found in the body of an adult person, which is mainly present in the bones.
    • Magnesium oxide (MgO) is the second most abundant compound in the Earth's crust.
    • In the past, magnesium powder was used to produce bright light in the form of a flash during photography.

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