In order to determine what the hardest metal in the world, you need to consider the two main contenders for the title - namely, osmium and iridium.Two of the most dense element of the periodic table is occupied therein, respectively, the places numbered 76 and 77. The density of these metals is the basis of their properties 22.6 grams per cubic centimeter.
To understand what is a very heavy metal, can be compared with an ordinary cork stopper made of any pretender to the title of "most heavy metal in the world."Thus, to balance to balance will need a little more than one hundred ordinary caps, while they will equilibrate only one made of iridium or osmium.
Both metals were discovered in the early XIX century.They are credited with the discovery of the scientist S. Tennant, who in 1804 carried out the analysis of sediments derived from the processing of platinum nuggets "aqua regia" (one part nitric acid and three parts hydrochloric acid).In the studied sediment he found two chemical elements that are assigned to the names of osmium and iridium.Iridium got its name from the Greek word for rainbow.This is due to the fact that the salt of the element changes color depending on the conditions.
Research continued Russian chemist Karl Klaus, who, since 1841, has received funding for research remains of native platinum processing in order to obtain additional portions of this precious metal.The goal has not been achieved, but in the process the scientist decided to conduct a thorough study of residual elements.
The reason why is difficult to determine what is the heavy metal of the two members, is that the difference in density is one hundredth of a gram.The situation is aggravated by the fact that native elements do not exist.
mined most of the heavy metal nuggets, which are compounds of ruthenium, osmium, platinum, palladium and iridium itself.The resulting element is a powdery substance, which can be forged at high temperatures.At the same time, iridium is the so-called "platinum metal", which defines some of its properties, including complete resistance to acids mixtures thereof.For example, the interaction with the "aqua regia" does not lead to any consequences.Iridium dissolves only certain mixtures of alkali, for example, potassium disulfate.
For what use is the heavy metal?From it are made crucibles, which are ideal for use in the laboratory, as well as a special kind of mouthpiece, which is used to produce refractory glass.It can also be found in high-end fountain pens and ballpoint pens rods.In addition, due to lower cost, Iridium began to be used in the automotive industry, where it is widely used in the manufacture of spark plugs.It should be noted that these candles are expensive, but their manufacture is justified, since the result obtained is very durable and reliable components.
Current prices for this most heavy metal is 35 US dollars per gram of iridium.