Samarium

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Information @ a Glance

  • Samarium is a chemical element with atomic number 62 and symbol Sm. it a hard, silvery white metal of the lanthanide series.
  • It has a bright silver lustre as well as is reasonably stable in air. It ignites in air at 150C.
  • It is one of the rare earth elements used to make carbon arc lights which are used in the motion picture industry for studio lighting and projector lights.
  • It makes up about 1% of Misch metal, a material that is used to make flints for lighters.
  • This metal is available commercially so it is not normally necessary to make it in the laboratory, which is just and it is difficult to isolate as the pure metal.
  • It has several isotopes, four of which are stable and several of which are unstable.
  • Recently developed samarium/cobalt  magnets have the highest resistance to demagnetisation of any material yet synthesised.
  • It is used in making alloys, pain killer medicines and that compounds created from samarium are also used as catalysts.
  • It is never found free in nature, but in contained in many minerals, including monazite, bastnasite and samarskite.
  • The energy product of samarium based permanent magnets is second to those based on neodymium, iron, and boron, but the latter have much lower Curie points than the samarium magnets and therefore are unsuitable for applications above approximately 300 C (570 F).
  • Samarium compounds act as sensitizers for phosphors excited in the infrared and samarium oxide is added to glass to absorb infrared radiation.

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