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   28    

28 Ni Nickel

Transition metal, mass: 58.693 u, 5 stable isotopes (58, 60, 61, 62, 64), abundance rank (earth/space): 22/15

Click image to magnify. Pure nickel button, obtained by electrolysis, about 20 grams. Original size in cm: 2 x 2
Nickel Nickel, electrode side
Nickel is a quite inert metal, which often is used for plating, but frequently causes allergic reactions on the skins of many people. Its main use is in alloys, especially in steel. Nickel is ferromagnetic and, together with iron, forms the inner core of the Earth, which is a big magnet. The rather rare nickel 62 is the most stable isotope, the one with the highest binding energy.

Widmannstätten patterns Widmannstätten patterns, iron-nickel meteorite
Widmanstätten patterns in an iron-nickel meteorite (Muonionalusta). These form in a millions of years long cooling process in the vacuum of space. Inside the taenite (30-50% Ni), kamacite (4-7.5% Ni) crystallizes. Etching with nitric acid makes the patterns visible. Nickel is less affected by that than iron, the more nickel abundant taenite forms straight lines, which enclose the plates of kamacite. Disc diameter: 3 cm.

Nickel sheet
Nickel sheet, 1.7 grams, 1 x 2 cm.


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The images are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License, unless otherwise noted. Attribution by linking (outside of the internet credit with url) to the according element page.



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