Europium is a chemical element with symbol Eu and atomic number 63. It was isolated in 1901 and is named after the continent of Europe.
Europium was discovered by Eugène-Antole Demarçay, a French chemist, in 1896. Demarçay suspected that samples of a recently discovered element, samarium, were contaminated with an unknown element. He was able to produce reasonably pure europium in 1901. Today, europium is primarily obtained through an ion exchange process from monazite sand ((Ce, La, Th, Nd, Y)PO4), a material rich in rare earth elements.
Europium is the most reactive of the rare earth elements. There are no commercial applications for europium metal, although it has been used to dope some types of plastics to make lasers. Since it is a good absorber of neutrons, europium is being studied for use in nuclear reactors.
Europium oxide (Eu2O3), one of europium’s compounds, is widely used as a red phosphor in television sets and as an activator for yttrium-based phosphors.
- There are no clear indications that europium is particularly toxic compared to other heavy metals. Europium chloride, nitrate and oxide have been tested for toxicity: europium chloride shows an acute intraperitoneal LD50 toxicity of 550 mg/kg and the acute oral LD50 toxicity is 5000 mg/kg. Europium nitrate shows a slightly higher intraperitoneal LD50 toxicity of 320 mg/kg, while the oral toxicity is above 5000 mg/kg. The metal dust presents a fire and explosion hazard
Unknown, please consult with your doctor.
Source: Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Europium#Applications
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