Friday, June 15, 2012

Liquid metal - the element Mercury!



When I was a school student, I applied a drop of (metal) mercury on the (metal) lead found on the joint of a divider instrument of my geometry box. A greyish white material resembling holy ash kept on coming out from it like in a magic show; even when I wiped it off it continued its coming out! This is the Amalgam that is formed by such dissolving of Lead element (Pb) in Mercury element (Hg).

Similarly, Gold (Au) and Aluminium (Al) are also affected by it. I also used this mercury in making a play thing: I emptied out the medicine content of a capsule and put a drop of mercury inside it and covered it back. When I tilted my palm with this capsule on it, the capsule tumbled up and moved on, without falling down! This feat is done due to the flowing movement of this metal, the liquid mercury. It is heavy and has a reflecting silvery surface. It becomes a solid at -38.83'C; but boils at 356.73'C like water boils. It is obtained from the ore, Cinnabar (Mercuric sulphide).


Mercury was used in many applications like thermometer, B.P. apparatus etc. Its amalgam formed out with a mixture of metals is used in dentistry to fill teeth cavities; its vapours used in florescent lamps give out visible light. It is also used in making mirrors (looking glass).
Such wondrous mercury is now banned in its applications due to its toxicity that impairs health and safety of human beings. But it still continues to be the wonder liquid metal as it was in the past!

3 comments:

h e m a n t h said...

On top of the interesting characteristics of Mercury, it's also amazing to see how an inquisitive child you had been! :)

Cosmos said...

Thanks.

MercLiq said...

Thanks for this blog. Also you have written about the effects of mercury as part. by OK agencies, a Biggest Liquid Mercury Dealers in India

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