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What is Cobalt?

Meaning of Cobalt

Cobalt is a fairly hard and brittle metallic chemical element in its pure form. It is used industrially in various ways and is also refined to produce salts and isotopes that have other practical applications.

As well as being an important part of many products, cobalt is also a crucial trace mineral, necessary for human well-being. The slightly dull, grayish element is rarely available in pure form, but can be found in numerous alloys.

The alloy is used in jet engines because it can withstand extreme temperatures.

Cobalt’s atomic number is 27 and it is identified by the symbol Co on the periodic table of elements. The metal’s name is derived from the German word for “goblin,” a reference to the goblins who supposedly used it to replace valuable silver ores.

The element was also considered a goblin because it tended to appear frequently with arsenic, a highly toxic element. When melted, arsenic fumes are released, threatening the health of workers.

Cobalt has the atomic number 27 and is identified by the symbol Co on the periodic table of elements.

One of the best known uses of cobalt is the blue dye extracted from its salts. This dye has been used for thousands of years, with samples showing up in Egyptian and Greek tombs.

The metal itself is often used in alloys to create things like magnets or metals that can withstand high temperatures. These high temperature alloys are used in things like jet engines.

Additionally, cobalt can be broken down into radioactive isotopes, which have various uses in medicine, industry, and research.

Cobalt is normally found near the ores nickel, lead, copper, and silver.

The metal appears in the form of an ore, typically heavily mixed with other materials, so it needs to be refined. Like many metals, it has ferromagnetic properties and can self-magnetize or hold a magnetic charge for long periods.

This property makes cobalt a popular choice in alloys used to produce rare earth magnets.

As with other trace elements, cobalt can be dangerous to human health if consumed in large quantities. Humans generally get all the mineral they need by eating a balanced, healthy diet, although some animals may require supplementation.

In large doses, cobalt can damage the heart and lungs.

Radioactive isotopes, used in a variety of medical treatments, can also be very harmful, and their use is carefully controlled as a result.

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