Sodium

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Sodium
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Sodium is a silvery grey shiny alkaline metal. It is very soft in its elemental form and it can easily be cut with a knife. Sodium has to be stored in paraffin due to its high reactivity towards moisture and oxygen present in the atmosphere. Large pieces of sodium can explode when they’re in contact with water as a result of the strongly exothermic reaction that takes place. Metallic sodium doesn’t occur in nature because of its reactivity; however, sodium can be found as an ion in many naturally occurring salts (i.e. sodium chloride, the common table salt). Sodium was first isolated by electrolysis of caustic soda (sodium hydroxide) by British chemist Sir Humphry Davy in 1807. Elemental sodium is mainly used in sodium vapour lamps where a current is used to vaporise the metal giving a characteristic bright yellow/orange light typical of street lights.

Sample ID: 215

Particularities

Chemical symbol
Na
State
Solid
Compound
Donated by
King’s College London
Selections
Categories
Metal
Curiosities
Relationships
Alkaline | Salt | Reactive | Hazardous | Lamp | Explosive

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