Yttrium, atomic structure

Yttrium, atomic structure

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This image is part of the sequence science and technology: atomic structure and data for the elements

Credit: CARLOS CLARIVAN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Yttrium (Y). Diagram of the nuclear composition, electron configuration, chemical data, and valence orbitals of an atom of yttrium-89 (atomic number: 39), the most common isotope of this element. The nucleus consists of 39 protons (red) and 50 neutrons (orange). 39 electrons (white) successively occupy available electron shells (rings). The stability of an element's outer (valence) electrons determines its chemical and physical properties. Yttrium is a transition metal in group 3, period 5, and the d-block of the periodic table. However, it is chemically similar to the lanthanides. It melts at 1526 degrees Celsius. Uses include phosphors, lasers and superconductors.

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