Rare Earth Metals – 17 Special Elements

Chemistry, Technology
[caption id="attachment_23646" align="alignright" width="480"] Rare Earths. Photo ARS-USDA by Peggy Grubb.[/caption] Most of us are familiar with elements – the building blocks of matter. Most of us know about elements such as oxygen, nitrogen, carbon, sulfur, sodium, and helium. Yet, there are other elements few have even heard of, despite their immense technological and medical importance. Are you familiar with the rare earth metals? Allow me to introduce them: what are they good for, and where do they come from? Rare Earth Metals Among the less commonly known elements are the rare earth metals. These elements have many important uses, such as: Rare earth metals are used in heat-resistant, powerful, permanent magnets. They are employed in superconductors for cryogenics applications. They are used in pyrophoric alloys for initiating combustion. And…
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