Uranium

Uranium
Uranium block

Uranium (U) is a chemical element of the periodic table, located in the period 7, and has the atomic number 92. It is the fourth element in the actinide series. It is a silvery-white metal which is named after the planet Uranus. It is counted as one of the radioactive elements.

On periodic table

group 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
period
1 1
H
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Hydrogen
2
He
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Helium
2 3
Li
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Lithium
4
Be
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Beryllium
5
B
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Boron
6
C
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Carbon
7
N
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Nitrogen
8
O
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Oxygen
9
F
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Fluorine
10
Ne
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Neon
3 11
Na
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Sodium
12
Mg
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Magnesium
13
Al
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Aluminium
14
Si
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Silicon
15
P
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Phosphorus
16
S
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Sulfur
17
Cl
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Chlorine
18
Ar
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Argon
4 19
K
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Potassium
20
Ca
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Calcium
21
Sc
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Scandium
22
Ti
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Titanium
23
V
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Vanadium
24
Cr
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Chromium
25
Mn
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Manganese
26
Fe
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Iron
27
Co
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Cobalt
28
Ni
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Nickel
29
Cu
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Copper
30
Zn
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Zinc
31
Ga
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Gallium
32
Ge
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Germanium
33
As
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Arsenic
34
Se
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Selenium
35
Br
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Bromine
36
Kr
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Krypton
5 37
Rb
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Rubidium
38
Sr
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Strontium
39
Y
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Yttrium
40
Zr
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Zirconium
41
Nb
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Niobium
42
Mo
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Molybdenum
43
Tc
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Technetium
44
Ru
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Ruthenium
45
Rh
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Rhodium
46
Pd
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Palladium
47
Ag
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Silver
48
Cd
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Cadmium
49
In
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Indium
50
Sn
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Tin
51
Sb
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Antimony
52
Te
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Tellurium
53
I
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Iodine
54
Xe
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Xenon
6 55
Cs
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Caesium
56
Ba
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Barium
72
Hf
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Hafnium
73
Ta
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Tantalum
74
W
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Tungsten
75
Re
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Rhenium
76
Os
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Osmium
77
Ir
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Iridium
78
Pt
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Platinum
79
Au
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Gold
80
Hg
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Mercury
81
Tl
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Thallium
82
Pb
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Lead
83
Bi
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Bismuth
84
Po
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Polonium
85
At
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Astatine
86
Rn
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Radon
7 87
Fr
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Francium
88
Ra
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Radium
104
Rf
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Rutherfordium
105
Db
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Dubnium
106
Sg
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Seaborgium
107
Bh
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Bohrium
108
Hs
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Hassium
109
Mt
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Meitnerium
110
Ds
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Darmstadtium
111
Rg
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Roentgenium
112
Cn
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Copernicium
113
Nh
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Nihonium
114
Fl
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Flerovium
115
Mc
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Moscovium
116
Lv
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Livermorium
117
Ts
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Tennessine
118
Og
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Oganesson
57
La
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Lanthanum
58
Ce
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Cerium
59
Pr
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Praseodymium
60
Nd
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Neodymium
61
Pm
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Promethium
62
Sm
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Samarium
63
Eu
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Europium
64
Gd
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Gadolinium
65
Tb
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Terbium
66
Dy
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Dysprosium
67
Ho
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Holmium
68
Er
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Erbium
69
Tm
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Thulium
70
Yb
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Ytterbium
71
Lu
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Lutetium
89
Ac
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Actinium
90
Th
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Thorium
91
Pa
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Protactinium
92
U
Uranium
93
Np
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Neptunium
94
Pu
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Plutonium
95
Am
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Americium
96
Cm
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Curium
97
Bk
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Berkelium
98
Cf
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Californium
99
Es
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Einsteinium
100
Fm
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Fermium
101
Md
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Mendelevium
102
No
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Nobelium
103
Lr
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Lawrencium
– f block

Uranium (U) is located on the periodic table in the actinide series, which is a group of elements located at the bottom of the table. Specifically, in period 7, between protactinium (Pa) and neptunium (Np).

Element information

Uranium Element
Uranium appearance | source: Wikipedia
Uranium Periodic Table
Uranium location on periodic table
Uranium is found in the seventh row of the periodic table, next to the protactinium element.
Origin of name named after planet Uranus
Symbol U
Atomic number (Z) 92
Atomic mass 238.02891 u
Block f-block
Period 7
Classification Actinide
Atomic radius 156 pm
Covalent radius 196±7 pm
Melting point 1132.2 ℃, 2070 ℉, 1405.3 K
Boiling point 4131 ℃, 7468 ℉, 4404 K
Electron configuration [Rn] 5f3 6d1 7s2
Electrons per shell 2, 8, 18, 32, 21, 9, 2
Crystal structure Orthorhombic
Phase at r.t Solid
Density near r.t 19.1 g/cm3
Natural occurrence Primordial
Oxidation state +4, +6
Electronegativity (Pauling scale) 1.38
Protons
Neutrons
Electrons
92
146
92
Learn how to find: Uranium protons neutrons electrons
CAS number 7440-61-1
Discovered by Martin Heinrich Klaproth in 1789

History

Martin Heinrich Klaproth | source: Wikipedia

The history of uranium dates back to the late 18th century when German chemist Martin Heinrich Klaproth identified an unknown element from pitchblende ore and named it “uranium” after the planet Uranus. In 1841, French chemist Eugene-Melchior Peligot isolated the metal for the first time by reducing uranium tetrachloride with potassium. The discovery of radioactivity in the late 19th century led to the realization that uranium was a radioactive element, and it became widely used in nuclear power and weapons.

During the 20th century, uranium was extensively mined and processed for military and civilian applications. In the 1930s, nuclear fission was discovered, and the potential for nuclear energy was realized. This led to a significant increase in the demand for uranium, and the development of nuclear reactors and weapons programs in several countries. The Manhattan Project, a research project that produced the first nuclear weapons during World War Ⅱ, was one of the most significant events in the history of uranium.

Today, uranium is primarily used for nuclear power generation, accounting for about 10% of the world’s electricity production. It is also used in some medical procedures and as a component in certain industrial processes. However, concerns over the safety and environmental impact of nuclear power have led to increased interest in renewable energy sources in recent years.

Occurrence and production

Uranium is a naturally occurring element found in the earth’s crust, typically at concentrations of 2-4 parts per million. It is more abundant than silver and about as common as tin. Uranium can be found in many different minerals, including uraninite, carnotite, autunite, and coffinite, as well as in phosphate rock, lignite, and monazite sands.

The primary method for mining uranium is through underground or open-pit mining techniques, depending on the location and geology of the deposit. Uranium ore is typically mined as an oxide, commonly called yellowcake, and then processed to extract the uranium.

The production of uranium involves several steps, including mining, milling, conversion, and enrichment. After the uranium is mined, it is crushed and ground into a fine powder. The uranium is then treated with chemicals to extract the uranium from the rock, resulting in yellowcake. The yellowcake is then processed further to produce uranium hexafluoride gas, which is used in the enrichment process. The enrichment process involves increasing the concentration of uranium-235, the isotope used in nuclear reactors, by separating it from the more abundant uranium-238 isotope. This can be done using gas diffusion, gas centrifugation, or laser enrichment technologies. Once enriched, the uranium is formed into fuel rods and used in nuclear power plants.

Properties

Physical properties

Uranium is a silvery-white metal that is highly reactive and easily oxidizes in air.

It has a melting point of 1132.2 ℃ and a boiling point of 4131 ℃.

Uranium has a density of 19.1 g/cm3, making it one of the densest naturally occurring elements.

Chemical properties

Uranium is a highly reactive metal that readily combines with other elements to form compounds.

It is a relatively soft metal and can be easily cut with a knife.

Uranium is highly soluble in acids and reacts with water to form uranium oxide and hydrogen gas.

It has a wide range of oxidation states, ranging from -3 to +6, with +4 and +6 being the most common.

Toxicity

Uranium is highly toxic, primarily due to its radioactivity.

It can cause both chemical toxicity and radiological toxicity, with the latter being the most dangerous.

Exposure to uranium can lead to a variety of health problems, including kidney damage, lung cancer, and genetic mutations.

The toxicity of uranium depends on various factors such as its chemical form, the route of exposure, and the duration and intensity of exposure.

Isotopes

Uranium has 27 known isotopes, including three naturally occurring isotopes: uranium-238, uranium-235, and uranium-234.

Uranium-235 is the only naturally occurring fissile isotope and is used in nuclear reactors and weapons.

Nuclear properties

Uranium is a radioactive element and undergoes alpha, beta, and gamma decay.

Its most stable isotope, uranium-238, has a half-life of about 4.5 billion years.

Uranium can also undergo nuclear fission, releasing a significant amount of energy.

Applications

Uranium is primarily used as fuel in nuclear reactors to generate electricity. The process involves the nuclear fission of uranium atoms, which releases large amounts of energy.

Uranium is also used in the production of nuclear weapons, as it is a key material for nuclear fission bombs and thermonuclear weapons.

Uranium isotopes are used in medicine for various diagnostic and therapeutic purposes, such as radiation therapy for cancer treatment and imaging techniques for examining organs and tissues.

Uranium isotopes are used in the geological dating of rocks and minerals, as the decay of uranium into lead can provide information on the age of the material.

Uranium glass glows under black light, exhibiting a green color | source: Wikipedia

Uranium oxide is used as a colorant in glass and ceramics, producing a yellow or green hue depending on the concentration used.

Uranium is used as an alloying agent in the production of high-strength and high-temperature alloys for use in aircraft and other high-performance applications.

Uranium is used as a radiation source for Geiger counters and other radiation detection devices.

Interesting facts

Uranium is the heaviest naturally occurring element on earth and has the highest atomic number (92) of all naturally occurring elements.

Uranium is a silvery-white metal that is ductile, malleable, and paramagnetic. It is also radioactive and has a very long half-life, making it useful in many scientific applications.

Uranium was discovered in 1789 by German chemist Martin Heinrich Klaproth, who named it after the planet Uranus.

Uranium is used as a fuel for nuclear reactors and in the production of nuclear weapons. It is also used in the production of isotopes for medical and industrial purposes.

The element has several isotopes, some of which are highly unstable and decay into other elements. Uranium-238, which makes up 99.3% of all natural uranium, has a half-life of about 4.5 billion years.

Uranium was used in the production of the first atomic bomb, which was detonated in the New Mexico desert in 1945. Since then, the element has played a significant role in world events and global politics.

Uranium is also found in trace amounts in many rocks, soils, and waters, and is used by scientists to determine the age of rocks and fossils through radiometric dating.

Uranium is also the only naturally occurring element that has fissile isotopes, meaning they can sustain a nuclear chain reaction.

Uranium has been used in traditional medicine in some cultures, particularly in India and China, where it is believed to have therapeutic properties. However, the use of uranium for medicinal purposes is controversial and not scientifically proven.

Related

More elements

s block
p block
d block
f block
Barium Aluminium Bohrium Actinium
Beryllium Antimony Cadmium Americium
Caesium Argon Chromium Berkelium
Calcium Arsenic Cobalt Californium
Francium Astatine Copernicium Cerium
Helium Bismuth Copper Curium
Hydrogen Boron Darmstadtium Dysprosium
Lithium Bromine Dubnium Einsteinium
Magnesium Carbon Gold Erbium
Potassium Chlorine Hafnium Europium
Radium Flerovium Hassium Fermium
Rubidium Fluorine Iridium Gadolinium
Sodium Gallium Iron Holmium
Strontium Germanium Lawrencium Lanthanum
Indium Lutetium Mendelevium
Iodine Manganese Neodymium
Krypton Meitnerium Neptunium
Lead Mercury Nobelium
Livermorium Molybdenum Plutonium
Moscovium Nickel Praseodymium
Neon Niobium Promethium
Nihonium Osmium Protactinium
Nitrogen Palladium Samarium
Oganesson Platinum Terbium
Oxygen Rhenium Thorium
Phosphorus Rhodium Thulium
Polonium Roentgenium Uranium
Radon Ruthenium Ytterbium
Selenium Rutherfordium
Silicon Scandium
Sulfur Seaborgium
Tellurium Silver
Tennessine Tantalum
Thallium Technetium
Tin Titanium
Xenon Tungsten
Vanadium
Yttrium
Zinc
Zirconium

External links

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Learnool.com was founded by Deep Rana, who is a mechanical engineer by profession and a blogger by passion. He has a good conceptual knowledge on different educational topics and he provides the same on this website. He loves to learn something new everyday and believes that the best utilization of free time is developing a new skill.

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