Symbol Ba
Atomic Number 56
Atomic Mass 137.327
Discovered by Barium was discovered by Humphry Davy

Chemical Properties of Barium

Group 2 Melting point 727°C, 1341°F, 1000 K
Period 6 Boiling point 1845°C, 3353°F, 2118 K
Block s Density (g cm−3) 3.62
Atomic number 56 Relative atomic mass 137.327
State at 20°C Solid Key isotopes 138 Ba
Electron configuration [Xe] 6s2 CAS number 7440-39-3
ChemSpider ID 4511436 ChemSpider is a free chemical structure database

What is Barium?

  • Represented by the symbol ‘Ba’, Barium is a group 2 element in the periodic table with atomic number 56.
  • Barium is a dense alkaline earth metal that occurs naturally in ore deposits and makes up 0.05% of the Earth’s crust (Genter 2001). Barium and its compounds may be found in nature or produced industrially for various uses.
  • It is a silvery-white metal that can be found in the environment, where it exists naturally. It occurs combined with other chemicals, such as carbon, oxygen, and sulfur.
  • It is very light and its density is half of that of iron.
  • Barium oxidizes in air, reacts vigorously with water to form the hydroxide, liberating hydrogen. It reacts with almost all the non-metals, forming often poisoning compounds.

Uses of Barium

  • Barium is often used for spark-plug electrodes and in vacuum tubes as a drying and oxygen-removing agent. As well as fluorescent lamps: impure barium sulfide phosphorescence after exposure to light.
  • Its compounds are used by oil and gas industries to make drilling mud. Drilling mud simplifies drilling through rocks by lubricating the drill.
  • Barium compounds are also used to make paint, bricks, tiles, glass, and rubber.
  • Barium nitrate and chlorate give fireworks a green color.

Practise This Question

Why is mineral water better than distilled water for drinking?