What is Boron? Origin / Meaning of the name Boron
This element was originally called boracium by Sir Humphrey Davy because it was drawn from boracic acid, borax is a mineral and a salt of boric acid. The name Boron is derived from a combination of the names Boracium and Carbon (because the substance resembles carbon).
What is Boron? Periodic Table Group and Classification of the Boron Element
Elements can be classified based on their physical states (States of Matter) e.g. gas, solid or liquid. This element is a solid. Boron is classified as a "Metalloid" element and is located in Groups 13, 14,15, 16 and 17 of the Periodic Table. An element classified as one of the Metalloids has the properties of both metals and Non-Metals. Some are semi-conductors and can carry an electrical charge making them useful in calculators and computers. Boron is different from other members of the Metalloid group (aluminum, boron, gallium, indium, and thallium) because boron is not a metal whereas all the other elements in the group are metals. For additional facts and information refer to Boron Properties.
What is Boron? Occurrence of the Boron Element
Boron is never found free in nature. It occurs as boric acid (H3BO3), and in salts of polyboric acids, which usually have very complicated formulas. Boric acid is found in nature in considerable quantities and forms one of the chief sources of boron compounds. It is found dissolved in the water of hot springs in some localities, particularly in Italy. Being volatile with steam, the vapor which escapes from these springs has some boric acid in it. It is easily obtained from these sources by condensation and evaporation, the necessary heat being supplied by other hot springs.
Obtained from kernite, boric acid, colemanite, ulexite and borates
Produced in USA and Turkey
Boric acid is sometimes found in volcanic spring waters
Abundances of the element in different environments
% in Universe 1×10-7%
% in Sun 2×10-7%
% in Meteorites 0.00016%
% in Earth's Crust 0.00086%
% in Oceans 0.00044%
% in Humans 0.00007%
Medical Uses of Boron - Health and Treatments
Interesting information on the Medical Uses of Boron, Health and Treatments. Boric acid is used chiefly as an ointment for minor skin disorders. Boric acid in solution was once extensively used as an anti-infective and eyewash, but the high incidence of serious toxic reactions associated with these preparations has greatly reduced their use. Medical uses of Boron, Health and Treatments - Boron is also found in compounds that are used in treating cancer and as astringents and antiseptics.
Associated Uses of Boron
Heat resistant alloys. Boron is used to make alloys by melting and mixing two or more metals. The most important of these alloys are used to make some of the strongest magnets known in Loudspeakers, Headphones, Microphones and Magnetic switches.
The History and Discovery of Boron
Boron was believed to have been isolated in 1808 by Humphrey Davy in London and, independently, by the French chemists Joseph Louis Gay-Lussac (1778 – 1850) and Louis-Jaques Thénard (1777 - 1857) in Paris. It later emerged that in both cases the "element" was actually a compound containing between 60–70% boron. It was identified as an element by Jons Jacob Berzelius (1779 – 1848) in 1824. Pure boron was produced by the American chemist Ezekiel Weintraub in 1909.
Sir Humphry Davy
Sir Humphry Davy (1778-1829) isolated Sodium, Lithium, Potassium, barium, strontium, and Calciumby means of electrolysis; demonstrated the elementary nature of Chlorine; invented the safety lamp; discovered the stupefying effects of nitrous oxide.