OPEN THREAD 20191215

Basically, all legal free speech is allowed. We will assist the authorities in dealing with illegal speech. You are each other’s moderators. Have fun. And don’t forget to MAGA at nuclear levels.

Citizen U

Day 39 – YTTRIUM.

16 thoughts on “OPEN THREAD 20191215

  1. We can start with the easy stuff — yttrium biochemistry. There isn’t any.

    Yttrium toxicity is meager — here’s the safety sheet — https://web.archive.org/web/20120925153535/http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/healthguidelines/yttriumandcompounds/recognition.html . If you breathe yttrium dust you get the same sort of problems you get if you breathe other dust. You have to ingest large-ish amounts of yttrium compounds (like yttrium nitrate) to be in real trouble — and, as a casual reader, I’m not convinced it isn’t the nitrate that’s the problem.

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  2. I can talk about isotopes briefly…….there’s one. Actually, there are at least 32 synthetic ones with half-lives from 100-200 nanoseconds up to 107 days. But in nature, there’s essentially one.

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  3. Yttrium is the 28th most abundant element in the earth’s crust, about 400 times as prevalent as silver. Typical dirt contains 10-150 ppm, and seawater contains about 9 ppt. Yttrium itself isn’t rare — but commercially viable ores are.

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  4. About 7000 tons of yttrium oxide are produced worldwide every year, and roughly 500,000 tons are estimated to be in reserves. Nobody keeps track of the metal, because it can be shipped around in bulk as the oxide.

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  5. Yttrium is amazingly useful across a broad range of materials as a dopant. It was one of the dopants to make red dots in color CRTs; metallurgists have used it in chromium, magnesium, vanadium, aluminum, molybdenum, zirconium, titanium and cast iron — it does different things in different mixes, sort of like salt in cooking. It’s used in camera lenses, spark plugs, and gas mantles for propane lanterns. Certain chemistries of lithium batteries use yttrium doping in their cathode.

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  6. That said, there are two applications where the yttrium is a star player and not just the 2nd baritone in the chorus. The first is as a “high-temperature superconductor” — https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-temperature_superconductivity . Mind you, they’re defining “high-temperature” as just a smidge cooler than liquid nitrogen, so you’re not going to be fiddling with it with your hands.

    “The Cuprate of Barium and Yttrium, YBa2Cu3O7βˆ’x (or Y123), was the first superconductor found above liquid nitrogen boiling point. There are two atoms of Barium for each atom of Yttrium. The proportions of the three different metals in the YBa2Cu3O7 superconductor are in the mole ratio of 1 to 2 to 3 for yttrium to barium to copper, respectively: this particular superconductor has also often been referred to as the 123 superconductor.”

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  7. And the second application where Yttrium really shines is in the production of synthetic garnets.

    A synthetic garnet is some things formed in a particular pattern — “The crystallographic structure of garnets has been expanded from the prototype to include chemicals with the general formula A3B2(C O4)3. Besides silicon, a large number of elements have been put on the C site, including Ge, Ga, Al, V and Fe.” [I’ve italicized the A, B, and C to make it easier to remember that boron and carbon are not involved.]

    YAG garnets — Y3Al2(AlO4)3 — have been used for jewelry……but also for YAG lasers. Cerium doped YAG are used to make white LEDs. You can make big YAG lasers for drilling and cutting metal. Yttrium Iron Garnets (YIG — Y3Fe2(FeO4)3 ) can exhibit interesting magnetic and microwave effects.

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  8. ok…what the heck…I’ll try to join in….

    YTTRIUM compounds serve as host lattices for lanthanide doping

    yep….and doped materials have found use in cathode ray tubes, LED lighting and Near-IR lasers..

    yr welcome ! πŸ˜€

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