The Open Door Web Site
What the name means: Vanadium derives from one of the names of the Norse goddess of beauty, Vanadis. It was so named because its compounds are so colourful.
Who identified vanadium?: It was a Spaniard called Andrès Manuel de Rio who first identified a new element in a brown ore when he was working in Mexico in 1801. He called this new element erythronium, from the Greek word erythros meaning red. Unfortunately, de Rio was unsure of his discovery and thought that it could be a lead-containing mineral. When a French scientist called Hippolyte Victor Collet-Descotils concluded that the brown ore was red lead, de Rio with drew his original claim.
Thirty years later, in 1831, Nils Gabriel Sefström found a new ore in a Swedish mine. He teamed up with Jöns Jakob Berzelius and they identified what they thought was an as yet undiscovered element. They named this new element Vanadium. However, later in the same year, Friedrich Wöhler proved that de Rio's erythronium and Vanadium were, in fact, the same element.
Vanadium was eventually isolated in 1867 by the Englishman Sir Henry Enfield Roscoe, who was a student of Robert Bunsen.
STP = standard temperature and pressure.
About vanadium: Vanadium is a silvery grey metal that is extremely resistant to corrosion. It is never found as the free element in nature. However, its compounds are quite common and can be found in over 65 different minerals. Vanadium is also present in crude oil and has been detected in the light spectra from the sun and other stars.
The Open Door Web Site is non-profit making. Your donations help towards the cost of maintaining this free service on-line.
Donate to the Open Door Web Site using PayPal