atomic no. 28, atomic wt. 58.69, metal, row 5, col. 8, val. 2-3, orbits 2-8-16-2

{Merck Index - © 1952 by Merck & Co., Inc.}

Nickel. Ni; at, wt. .58.69; at. no. 28; valence 2-3. Its elementary nature was recognized by Cronstedt in 1754: Cronstedt, Mineralogie 218, Stockholm (1758). Isolated by Berthier, Ann. Chim. Phys. [2] 14, 52 (1820); 25, 94 (1824). Occurs free in meteorites; found in many ores in combination with sulfur, arsenic or antimony; the chief sources of it are the minerals chalcopyrite, pyrrhotite, pentlandite. Methods of extracting and purifying: Ouvrard, et al., cited by Mellor, A Comprehensive Treatise an Inorganic and Theoretical Chemistry, 15, 15 (1936). Prepn. of high purity nickel: Wise, Schaefer, Metals and Alloys 16, 424 (1924).

Lustrous-white, hard, ferromagnetic metal, crystallizes in face-centered cubes. M. 1455°; d. 8.90. Stable in air at ordinary temperature; burns in oxygen, forming NiO; not affected by water; decomposes steam at a red heat. Slowly attacked by dilute hydrochloric or sulfuric acid; readily attacked by nitric acid. Not attacked by fused alkali hydroxides.

Use: Nickel-plating; for various alloys such as new silver, Chinese silver, German silver; for coins, electrotypes, storage batteries; magnets, lightning-rod tips, electrical contacts and electrodes, spark plugs, machinery parts; catalyzer for hydrogenation of oils and other organic substances. See also Raney nickel. Probably the largest use of nickel is in the manufacture of monel metal, stainless steels, and nickel-chrome resistance wire.

Commercially available.

Toxicity: May cause dermatitis in sensitive individuals.

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