Rhodium

Rhodium does not appear naturally, tending to be found with other platinum group metals. It is a hard, lustrous, silvery coloured metal which is stable in air. Rhodium is inert to all acids but is attacked by fused alkalis. The metal has high thermal and electrical conductivities and is alloyed with platinum to form the positive wire of a Pt/Rh - Pt thermocouple. Other applications of the material include its use as a plating material (to provide a hard and bright surface which is resistant to oxidation), as a catalyst and also as an alloying element, where it improves the hardness of the resulting alloy.


Symbol
Rh

Discovered
1803 by W.H. Woolaston in London.

Abundance
One of the rarest metals on earth with an abundance of 2 x 10-4 ppm.

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Atomic number 45 Clip
Atomic / Molecular Weight 102.9055 gmol-1Clip
Density 12420 kgm-3Clip
Crystal Structure fcc Clip
Lattice constant 380 fmClip
Melting Point 2236 KClip
Boiling Point 3973 KClip
Linear expansivity 0.0000082 K-1Clip
Specific heat capacity 243 Jkg-1K-1Clip
Thermal conductivity 151 Wm-1K-1Clip
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See also: Periodic Table, Platinum, Wollaston, William Hyde.

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Subjects: Chemistry