Symbol Ta
Atomic Number 73
Atomic Mass 180.948 g.mol -1
Discovered by Anders Gustav Ekeberg in 1802

Chemical Properties of Tantalum

Group 5 Melting point 3017°C, 5463°F, 3290 K
Period 6 Boiling point 5455°C, 9851°F, 5728 K
Block d Density (g cm−3) 16.4
Atomic number 73 Relative atomic mass 180.948
State at 20°C Solid Key isotopes 180Ta, 181Ta
Electron configuration [Xe] 4f145d36s2 CAS number 7440-25-7
ChemSpider ID 22395 ChemSpider is a free chemical structure database

What is Tantalum?

  • Tantalum is a chemical element with symbol Ta and atomic number 73 in the periodic table.
  • Its name originates from the name of a villain from Greek mythology, Tantalus.

Physical properties of Tantalum

  • Tantalum appears as a shiny and silvery metal in its soft and pure form.
  • The metal is corrosion resistant and is bound to chemical attack below 150 C.
  • This element is abundantly found in nature just like the uranium.
  • Tantalum is in the form of hard, rare, blue-gray, lustrous metal.
  • The metal is said to be an excellent conductor of heat & electricity. It has a high melting point of about 3017 °C and a boiling point of about 5458 °C.
  • Apart from the Hydrochloric acid, this metal shows excellent resistance to all acids in normal temperature.
  • It usually appears in the +5 oxidation state coming in its compounds. It is known to be as one of the inert chemical elements found on the earth.

Applications and effects of Tantalum

  • It finds its applications in the field of high-temperature devices such as in the engines of aircraft
  • It is used mainly as an alloying medium as it is helpful for hardening metals
  • It is employed in the manufacture of capacitors
  • It has high number of medical as well as dental applications
  • It is utilized in the chemical industries as it exhibits the properties of resistance to corrosion.

Health effects of Tantalum

  • Tantalum causes many health-related problems such as irritation of the skin and eye when inhaled, ingested or when it gets absorbed into the skin.
  • This metal is also dangerous to mucous membranes and also the upper respiratory tract.
  • This element might cause severe damage to the environment hence necessary measures need to be taken before disposing of it.

Practise This Question

Match the following

a)a(i)Activation energy of forward reactionb)b(ii)Change in enthalpyc)c(iii)Activation energy of backward reactiond)d(iv)Potential Energy of Reactantse)e(v)Potential energy of Products