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About Promethium

Promethium Bohr

All of promethium’s isotopes are radioactive and have short half-lives, so appreciable amounts are not found in natural sources. The existence of an unknown element with atomic number 61 was predicted in 1914 by Henry Mosley, but the metal was not successfully produced and fully characterized until 1945. This was accomplished by Jacob A. Marinsky, Lawrence E. Glendenin, and Charles D. Coryell at Oak Ridge National Laboratory by separating and analyzing fission products of uranium. The name was derived from the Titan in Greek mythology who stole fire from Mount Olympus to give to humans, Prometheus. Since the element can only be obtained from a lab, it has few applications. The only isotope of promethium used outside of research is promethium-147, which is produced and used in very small (milligram) quantities in atomic batteries and signal lights containing phosphors that emit light in response to absorption of radiation emitted by the isotope. Since this relatively stable isotope emits x-rays, it could theoretically be used for portable x-ray sources.

Promethium Properties

Promethium Bohr ModelPromethium is a Block F, Group 3, Period 6 element. The number of electrons in each of Promethium's shells is 2, 8, 18, 23, 8, 2 and its electron configuration is [Xe] 4f5 6s2. The promethium atom has a radius of 183.pm and it's Van der Waals radius is 236.pm. In its elemental form, CAS 7440-12-2, promethium has a metalic appearance. Promethium was discovered by Chien Shiung Wu, Emilio Segrè, and Hans Bethe in 1942. It was first isolated by J. A. Marinsky, Lawrence Glendenin and Charles D. Coryell in 1945. The element name comes from Greek mythology after the titan, Prometheus, who stole the fire of Zeus and gave it to mankind.

Promethium is radioactive. Promethium information, including technical data, properties, and other useful facts are specified below. Scientific facts such as the atomic structure, ionization energy, abundance on Earth, conductivity, and thermal properties are included.

Symbol: Pm
Atomic Number: 61
Atomic Weight: 145
Element Category: Lanthanide
Group, Period, Block: n/a, 6, f
Color: silvery-white/ metallic
Other Names: Prometio, Promécio
Melting Point: 1042°C, 1907.6°F, 1315.15 K
Boiling Point: 3000°C, 5432°F, 3273.15 K
Density: 7.26 g·cm3
Liquid Density @ Melting Point: N/A
Density @ 20°C: 7.220 g/cm3
Density of Solid: 7264 kg·m3
Specific Heat: N/A
Superconductivity Temperature: N/A
Triple Point: N/A
Critical Point: N/A
Heat of Fusion (kJ·mol-1): about 7.7
Heat of Vaporization (kJ·mol-1): 290
Heat of Atomization (kJ·mol-1): about 350
Thermal Conductivity: 17.9 W·m-1·K-1
Thermal Expansion: (r.t.) ( poly) est. 11 µm/(m·K)
Electrical Resistivity: (r.t.) est. 0.75 nΩ·m
Tensile Strength: N/A
Molar Heat Capacity: N/A
Young's Modulus: (form) est. 46 GPa
Shear Modulus: ( form) est. 18 GPa
Bulk Modulus: ( form) est. 33 GPa
Poisson Ratio: ( form) est. 0.28
Mohs Hardness: N/A
Vickers Hardness: N/A
Brinell Hardness: N/A
Speed of Sound: N/A
Pauling Electronegativity: N/A
Sanderson Electronegativity: N/A
Allred Rochow Electronegativity: 1.07
Mulliken-Jaffe Electronegativity: N/A
Allen Electronegativity: N/A
Pauling Electropositivity: N/A
Reflectivity (%): N/A
Refractive Index: N/A
Electrons: 61
Protons: 61
Neutrons: 84
Electron Configuration: [Xe] 4f5 6s2
Atomic Radius: 183 pm
Atomic Radius,
non-bonded (Å):
2.38
Covalent Radius: 199 pm
Covalent Radius (Å): 1.86
Van der Waals Radius: 236 pm
Oxidation States: 3 (mildly basic oxide)
Phase: Solid
Crystal Structure: hexagonal
Magnetic Ordering: paramagnetic
Electron Affinity (kJ·mol-1) Unknown
1st Ionization Energy: 538.39 kJ·mol-1
2nd Ionization Energy: 1051.70 kJ·mol-1
3rd Ionization Energy: 2151.64 kJ·mol-1
CAS Number: 7440-12-2
EC Number: N/A
MDL Number: N/A
Beilstein Number: N/A
SMILES Identifier: [Pm]
InChI Identifier: InChI=1S/Pm
InChI Key: VQMWBBYLQSCNPO-UHFFFAOYSA-N
PubChem CID: 23944
ChemSpider ID: 22386
Earth - Total: N/A
Mercury - Total: N/A
Venus - Total: N/A
Earth - Seawater (Oceans), ppb by weight: N/A
Earth - Seawater (Oceans), ppb by atoms: N/A
Earth -  Crust (Crustal Rocks), ppb by weight: N/A
Earth -  Crust (Crustal Rocks), ppb by atoms: N/A
Sun - Total, ppb by weight: N/A
Sun - Total, ppb by atoms: N/A
Stream, ppb by weight: N/A
Stream, ppb by atoms: N/A
Meterorite (Carbonaceous), ppb by weight: N/A
Meterorite (Carbonaceous), ppb by atoms: N/A
Typical Human Body, ppb by weight: N/A
Typical Human Body, ppb by atom: N/A
Universe, ppb by weight: N/A
Universe, ppb by atom: N/A
Discovered By: Chien Shiung Wu, Emilio Segrè, Hans Bethe
Discovery Date: 1942
First Isolation: Charles D. Coryell, Jacob A. Marinsky, Lawrence E. Glendenin, Harold G. Richter (1945)

Promethium Isotopes

Promethium (Pm) does not exist in nature (except in trace quantities from spontaneous fission and alpha decay of 151Eu). It has no stable isotopes.

Nuclide Isotopic Mass Half-Life Mode of Decay Nuclear Spin Magnetic Moment Binding Energy (MeV) Natural Abundance
(% by atom)
126Pm125.95752(54)#0.5# sUnknownN/AN/A996.05-
127Pm126.95163(64)#1# sUnknown5/2+#N/A1004.13-
128Pm127.94842(43)#1.0(3) sß+ to 128Nd; p to 127Nd6+#N/A1021.53-
129Pm128.94316(43)#3# s [>200 ns]ß+ to 129Nd5/2+#N/A1029.61-
130Pm129.94045(32)#2.6(2) sß+ to 130Nd; ß+ + p to 129Pr(5+,6+,4+)N/A1037.68-
131Pm130.93587(21)#6.3(8) sß+ + p to 130Pr; ß+ to 131Nd5/2+#N/A1055.08-
132Pm131.93375(21)#6.2(6) sß+ to 132Nd; ß+ + p to 131Pr(3+)N/A1063.16-
133Pm132.92978(5)15(3) sß+ to 133Nd(3/2+)N/A1080.55-
134Pm133.92835(6)22(1) sß+ to 134Nd(5+)N/A1088.63-
135Pm134.92488(6)49(3) sß+ to 135Nd(5/2+,3/2+)N/A1096.71-
136Pm135.92357(8)107(6) sß+ to 136Nd(5-)N/A1104.79-
137Pm136.920479(14)2# minß+ to 137Nd5/2+#N/A1112.87-
138Pm137.919548(30)10(2) sß+ to 138Nd1+#N/A1130.26-
139Pm138.916804(14)4.15(5) minß+ to 139Nd(5/2)+N/A1138.34-
140Pm139.91604(4)9.2(2) sß+ to 140Nd1+N/A1146.42-
141Pm140.913555(15)20.90(5) minß+ to 141Nd5/2+N/A1154.5-
142Pm141.912874(27)40.5(5) sß+ to 142Nd1+N/A1162.58-
143Pm142.910933(4)265(7) dEC to 143Nd5/2+3.81170.66-
144Pm143.912591(3)363(14) dEC to 144Nd5-1.71178.73-
145Pm144.912749(3)17.7(4) yEC to 145Nd; a to 141Pr5/2+N/A1186.81-
146Pm145.914696(5)5.53(5) yEC to 146Nd; ß- to 146Sm3-N/A1194.89-
147Pm146.9151385(26)2.6234(2) yß- to 147Sm7/2+2.61202.97-
148Pm147.917475(7)5.368(2) dß- to 148Sm1-21211.05-
149Pm148.918334(4)53.08(5) hß- to 149Sm7/2+3.31219.13-
150Pm149.920984(22)2.68(2) hß- to 150Sm(1-)N/A1217.89-
151Pm150.921207(6)28.40(4) hß- to 151Sm5/2+1.81225.97-
152Pm151.923497(28)4.12(8) minß- to 152Sm1+N/A1234.05-
153Pm152.924117(12)5.25(2) minß- to 153Sm5/2-N/A1242.13-
154Pm153.92646(5)1.73(10) minß- to 154Sm(0,1)N/A1250.21-
155Pm154.92810(3)41.5(2) sß- to 155Sm(5/2-)N/A1258.28-
156Pm155.93106(4)26.70(10) sß- to 156Sm4-N/A1257.05-
157Pm156.93304(12)10.56(10) sß- to 157Sm(5/2-)N/A1265.13-
158Pm157.93656(14)4.8(5) sß- to 158SmN/AN/A1273.2-
159Pm158.93897(21)#1.47(15) sß- to 159Sm5/2-#N/A1281.28-
160Pm159.94299(32)#2# sß- to 160SmN/AN/A1280.05-
161Pm160.94586(54)#700# msß- to 161Sm5/2-#N/A1288.12-
162Pm161.95029(75)#500# msß- to 162SmN/AN/A1286.89-
163Pm162.95368(86)#200# msß- to 163Sm5/2-#N/A1294.96-
Promethium Elemental Symbol

Recent Research & Development for Promethium

  • Effectiveness of pentacine on intratracheal administration of promethium-147.1973 JanZhanadilov Sh. Gig Tr Prof Zabol. 1973 Jan
  • Excretion and body distribution of promethium 147: a study in rats after intramuscular injection.1973 MayHerman MW, Clark AJ. Arch Environ Health. 1973 May
  • Effect of inactive vehicles on the behavior of inhaled promethium in the lungs.1976 AprGenzike F, Kheltser F, Nitshke KhV. Med Radiol (Mosk). 1976 Apr
  • Comparative assessment of exposure of the skin of sexually immature swine to the beta-rays of thallium-204 and promethium-147.1977 Mar-AprZav'ialov AP, A'ref'eva ZS, Nazarov VA, Khriashcheva LA. Radiobiologiia. 1977 Mar-Apr
  • Comparative assessment of the toxic action of cerium-144 and promethium-147 in rats according to biochemical indices.1977 Mar-AprFedorova AV, Zapol'skaia NA. Radiobiologiia. 1977 Mar-Apr
  • Isolation of strontium-90, yttrium-90, promethium-147, and cerium-144 from wet ashed urine by calcium oxalate coprecipitation and sequential solvent extraction.1982 JulKramer GH, Davies JM. Anal Chem. 1982 Jul
  • The response of murine intestinal crypts to short-range promethium-147 beta irradiation: deductions concerning clonogenic cell numbers and positions.1989 MayHendry JH, Potten CS, Ghafoor A, Moore JV, Roberts SA, Williams PC. Radiat Res. 1989 May
  • Comparative biokinetics of trivalent radionuclides with similar ionic dimensions: promethium-147, curium-242 and americium-241.2007 SepPriest ND. Radiat Res. 2007 Sep
  • Promethium-147 capacitor.2009 JunKavetskiy A, Yakubova G, Lin Q, Chan D, Yousaf SM, Bower K, Robertson JD, Garnov A, Meier D. Appl Radiat Isot. 2009 Jun
  • A novel ion selective sensor for promethium determination.2010 Nov 29Gupta VK, Jain R, Hamdan AJ, Agarwal S, Bharti AK. Anal Chim Acta. 2010 Nov 29