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About Zinc

Zinc Bohr

Zinc is one of a few metals that were widely used by human societies in alloys long before they were recognized as metals themselves. The earliest brasses, alloys of copper and small percentages of zinc, first produced as early as several millennia BCE, likely resulted from the accidental smelting of zinc-rich copper ores. There is evidence that by the eighth century BCE, the special properties of metals smelted from such ores was recognized, and thus the ore was highly valued and sought after.

Later, starting in the first century BCE, brass was produced by heating copper ore and zinc ore together, producing a zinc vapor that reacted with the copper. At this time, brass became widely used in coinage and military equipment, and the methods for producing it spread around the world. By the 14th century in India and 17th century in China, the metallic form of zinc was finally produced deliberately, and a variety of European chemists and alchemists worked with the metal, but discovery of zinc as an element is generally credited to German chemist Andreas Marggraf for his extensive work in 1746, which documented his ability to obtain metallic zinc from a number of zinc compounds.

In modern times, zinc continues to be used as an alloy metal. Brass alloys are more corrosion resistant than copper and more workable than zinc alone or the other common copper alloy, bronze. They are additionally notable for their acoustic properties, which lend them to use in musical instruments. Brass also retains some of the antimicrobial properties of copper, and therefore is used for commonly touched objects in hospitals, including doorknobs and surfaces. Another alloy, "nickel silver," contains nickel, copper, and zinc, and is used decoratively and for many musical instruments that are silver in color. There are also many majority-zinc alloys tailored to specific uses, with small amounts of additives used to impart key qualities. Zinc-aluminum, for example, has a lower melting point and lower viscosity than zinc, making it more suitable for casting of small and intricate shapes. Zinc sheet metals are produced using small amounts of titanium and copper, which make a resulting alloy less brittle than zinc that therefore can be roll formed or bent.

As important as zinc alloys have been throughout history and still are today, in modern times zinc’s largest use is in galvanizing other metals, usually iron or steel, to protect them against corrosion. Galvanization is simply the application of a thin coating of zinc to a metal surface through any of several methods. Initially, the top of this layer reacts with the atmosphere to produce zinc carbonate, which protects all the underlying metal from corrosion. When the zinc layer is scratched down to the underlying metal, however, zinc still protects the underlying metal, now by acting as a sacrificial anode. This same property is exploited when zinc is used as the sacrificial anode in cathodic protection of buried pipelines or submerged iron components of a ship. Zinc also serves as an anode in alkaline batteries, zinc-carbon batteries, silver-zinc batteries, and zinc-air fuel cells, and as a cathode in silver oxide batteries.

Dozens of zinc compounds find use in everyday products such as deodorants, cosmetics, sunscreens, anti-dandruff shampoos, and dietary supplements. Some zinc compounds find use in organic synthesis or industrial chemistry: notably, zinc oxide has long been used as a catalyst in the vulcanization of rubber. Additionally, compounds of zinc with oxygen, sulfur, selenium, or tellurium are all II-VI semiconductors with properties that recommend them for a variety of optoelectronic applications, including light-emitting diodes (LEDs), laser diodes, and solar cells. Zinc sulfide, zinc selenide, and zinc telluride all are used as infrared or near-infrared optical materials, and doped versions of each compound exist with other useful properties such as scintillation. Zinc may also serve as a component the ternary semiconductors cadmium zinc telluride and mercury zinc telluride, which are useful for similar applications, but additionally have band gaps that can be easily tuned by altering the precise composition of the material.

Zinc is the fourth most commonly used metal, behind only iron, aluminum, and copper. It is mined primarily from zinc sulfide deposits, which are generally roasted to produce zinc oxide and then processed to the metal through pyrometallurgy or electrowinning. Most of the zinc used annually is newly mined, but about thirty percent is recycled.

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Zinc has unusual electrical, thermal, optical, and solid-state properties that have not been fully investigated. Zinc metal is employed to form numerous alloys with other metals. Brass, nickel silver, commercial bronze, soft solder, and aluminum solder are some of the more important zinc alloys. Zinc is used to produce die castings which are used extensively by the automotive, electrical, and hardware industries. Zinc is also used to galvanize other metals such as iron to prevent corrosion. High Purity (99.999%) Zinc Oxide (ZnO) PowderZinc oxide is widely used in the manufacture of paints, rubber products, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, floor coverings, plastics, printing inks, soap, storage batteries, textiles, and electrical equipment. Zinc sulfide is used in making luminous dials, X-ray and TV screens, and fluorescent lights. High Purity (99.9999%) Zinc (Zn) Sputtering TargetThe chloride and chromate are also important compounds. Zinc is available as metal and compounds with purities from 99% to 99.999% (ACS grade to ultra-high purity). Elemental or metallic forms include pellets, rod, wire and granules for evaporation source material purposes. Zinc nanoparticles and nanopowders provide ultra-high surface area. Zinc oxide is available in powder and dense pellet form for such uses as optical coating and thin film applications. Oxides tend to be insoluble. Fluorides are another insoluble form for uses in which oxygen is undesirable such as metallurgy, chemical and physical vapor deposition and in some optical coating. Zinc is also available in soluble forms including chlorides, nitrates and acetates. These compounds can be manufactured as solutions at specified stoichiometries.

Zinc Properties

Zinc (Zn) atomic and molecular weight, atomic number and elemental symbolZinc is a Block D, Group 12, Period 4 element. The number of electrons in each of zinc's shells is 2, 8, 18, 2, and its electron configuration is [Ar] 3d10 4s2. The zinc atom has a radius of and its Van der Waals radius is In its elemental form, CAS 7440-66-6, zinc has a silver-gray appearance. Zinc Bohr ModelIt is brittle at ordinary temperatures but malleable at 100 °C to 150 °C. Elemental ZincIt is a fair conductor of electricity, and burns in air at high red producing white clouds of the oxide. Zinc is mined from sulfidic ore deposits. The most common zinc ore is sphalerite (zinc blende), a zinc sulfide mineral. It is is the 24th most abundant element in the earth's crust and the fourth most common metal in use (after iron, aluminum, and copper). Metallic zinc was first isolated from a variety of zinc compounds by Andreas Marggraf in 1746. The element name zinc originates from the German word "zin" meaning tin.

Symbol: Zn
Atomic Number: 30
Atomic Weight: 65.38
Element Category: transition metal
Group, Period, Block: 12, 4, d
Color: bluish pale gray/ bluish silver
Other Names: Zincum, Zink, Zinco
Melting Point: 419.53 °C, 787.15 °F, 692.68 K
Boiling Point: 907 °C, 1665 °F, 1180 K
Density: 7.14 g·cm3
Liquid Density @ Melting Point: 6.57 g·cm3
Density @ 20°C: 7.14 g/cm3
Density of Solid: 7140 kg·m3
Specific Heat: 0.0928 Cal/g/K @ 25 °C
Superconductivity Temperature: 0.85 [or -272.3 °C (-458.1 °F)] K
Triple Point: 692.65 K, 0.065 kPa 
Critical Point: N/A
Heat of Fusion (kJ·mol-1): 6.67
Heat of Vaporization (kJ·mol-1): 114.2
Heat of Atomization (kJ·mol-1): 130.181
Thermal Conductivity: 1.16 W/cm/K @ 298.2 K 
Thermal Expansion: (25 °C) 30.2 µm·m-1·K-1
Electrical Resistivity: (20 °C) 59.0 nΩ·m
Tensile Strength: N/A
Molar Heat Capacity: 25.470 J·mol-1·K-1
Young's Modulus: 108 GPa
Shear Modulus: 43 GPa
Bulk Modulus: 70 GPa
Poisson Ratio: 0.25
Mohs Hardness: 2.5
Vickers Hardness: N/A
Brinell Hardness: 412 MPa
Speed of Sound: (r.t.) (rolled) 3850 m·s-1
Pauling Electronegativity: 1.65
Sanderson Electronegativity: 2.23
Allred Rochow Electronegativity: 1.66
Mulliken-Jaffe Electronegativity: 1.65 (sp orbital)
Allen Electronegativity: N/A
Pauling Electropositivity: 2.35
Reflectivity (%): 80
Refractive Index: 1.00205
Electrons: 30
Protons: 30
Neutrons: 35
Electron Configuration: [Ar] 3d10 4s2
Atomic Radius: 134 pm
Atomic Radius,
non-bonded (Å):
Covalent Radius: 122±4 pm
Covalent Radius (Å): 1.2
Van der Waals Radius: 139 pm
Oxidation States: +2, +1, 0 (amphoteric oxide)
Phase: Solid
Crystal Structure: hexagonal close-packed
Magnetic Ordering: diamagnetic
Electron Affinity (kJ·mol-1) Not stable
1st Ionization Energy: 906.41 kJ·mol-1
2nd Ionization Energy: 1733.31 kJ·mol-1
3rd Ionization Energy: 3832.71 kJ·mol-1
CAS Number: 7440-66-6
EC Number: 231-175-3
MDL Number: MFCD00011291 
Beilstein Number: N/A
SMILES Identifier: [Zn]
InChI Identifier: InChI=1S/Zn
PubChem CID: 23994
ChemSpider ID: 22430
Earth - Total: 74 ppm 
Mercury - Total: 12.1 ppm
Venus - Total: 82 ppm 
Earth - Seawater (Oceans), ppb by weight: 5
Earth - Seawater (Oceans), ppb by atoms: 0.47
Earth -  Crust (Crustal Rocks), ppb by weight: 79000
Earth -  Crust (Crustal Rocks), ppb by atoms: 25000
Sun - Total, ppb by weight: 2000
Sun - Total, ppb by atoms: 30
Stream, ppb by weight: 10
Stream, ppb by atoms: 0.2
Meterorite (Carbonaceous), ppb by weight: 180000
Meterorite (Carbonaceous), ppb by atoms: 44000
Typical Human Body, ppb by weight: 33000
Typical Human Body, ppb by atom: 3200
Universe, ppb by weight: 300
Universe, ppb by atom: 6
Discovered By: Indian metallurgists
Discovery Date: Prior to 1000 BC
First Isolation: Andreas Sigismund Marggraf (1746)

Health, Safety & Transportation Information for Zinc

Zinc is considered non-toxic in moderate doses but can cause nausea if taken in excess. Safety data for Zinc and its compounds can vary widely depending on the form. For potential hazard information, toxicity, and road, sea and air transportation limitations, such as DOT Hazard Class, DOT Number, EU Number, NFPA Health rating and RTECS Class, please see the specific material or compound referenced in the Products tab. The below information applies to elemental (metallic) Zinc.

Safety Data
Signal Word Danger
Hazard Statements H251-H261
Hazard Codes F,N
Risk Codes 15-17-50/53
Safety Precautions 43-46-60-61
RTECS Number ZG8600000
Transport Information UN 1436 4.3/PG 2
WGK Germany nwg
Globally Harmonized System of
Classification and Labelling (GHS)
Review and Print SDS for Zinc Metal


Date Created: 05/15/2015
Date Revised: 05/15/2015


Product Name: Zinc Metal

Product Number: All applicable American Elements product codes, e.g. ZN-M-02, ZN-M-03, ZN-M-04, ZN-M-05, ZN-M-06

CAS #: 7440-66-6

Relevant identified uses of the substance: Scientific research and development

Supplier details:
American Elements
1093 Broxton Ave. Suite 2000
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Tel: +1 310-208-0551
Fax: +1 310-208-0351

Emergency telephone number:
Domestic, North America +1 800-424-9300
International +1 703-527-3887


Classification of the substance or mixture
Classification according to Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008
The substance is not classified as hazardous to health or the environment according to the CLP regulation.
Hazards not otherwise classified
No information known.
Label elements
Labelling according to Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008
Not applicable
Hazard pictograms
Not applicable
Signal word
Not applicable
Hazard statements
Not applicable
WHMIS classification
Not controlled
Classification system
HMIS ratings (scale 0-4)
(Hazardous Materials Identification System)

Health (acute effects) = 0
Flammability = 0
Physical Hazard = 0
Other hazards
Results of PBT and vPvB assessment
PBT: Not applicable.
vPvB: Not applicable.


Chemical characterization: Substances
CAS# Description:
7440-66-6 Zinc
Identification number(s):
EC number: 231-175-3


Description of first aid measures
General information
No special measures required.
After inhalation
Seek medical treatment in case of complaints.
After skin contact
Generally the product does not irritate the skin.
After eye contact
Rinse opened eye for several minutes under running water. If symptoms persist, consult a doctor.
After swallowing
If symptoms persist consult doctor.
Information for doctor
Most important symptoms and effects, both acute and delayed
No further relevant information available.
Indication of any immediate medical attention and special treatment needed
No further relevant information available.


Extinguishing media
Suitable extinguishing agents
Special powder for metal fires. Do not use water.
For safety reasons unsuitable extinguishing agents
Special hazards arising from the substance or mixture
If this product is involved in a fire, the following can be released:
Metal oxide fume
Advice for firefighters
Protective equipment:
No special measures required


Personal precautions, protective equipment and emergency procedures
Not required.
Environmental precautions:
Do not allow material to be released to the environment without proper governmental permits.
Methods and material for containment and cleaning up:
Pick up mechanically.
Prevention of secondary hazards:
No special measures required.
Reference to other sections
See Section 7 for information on safe handling
See Section 8 for information on personal protection equipment.
See Section 13 for disposal information.


Precautions for safe handling
Keep container tightly sealed.
Store in cool, dry place in tightly closed containers.
Information about protection against explosions and fires:
No special measures required.
Conditions for safe storage, including any incompatibilities
Requirements to be met by storerooms and receptacles:
No special requirements.
Information about storage in one common storage facility:
Not required.
Further information about storage conditions:
Keep container tightly sealed.
Store in cool, dry conditions in well sealed containers.
Specific end use(s)
No further relevant information available.


Additional information about design of technical systems:
No further data; see section 7.
Control parameters
Components with limit values that require monitoring at the workplace:
The product does not contain any relevant quantities of materials with critical values that have to be monitored at the workplace.
Additional information: No data
Exposure controls
Personal protective equipment
General protective and hygienic measures
The usual precautionary measures for handling chemicals should be followed.
Maintain an ergonomically appropriate working environment.
Breathing equipment: Not required.
Protection of hands: Not required.
Penetration time of glove material (in minutes): Not determined
Eye protection: Safety glasses
Body protection: Protective work clothing.


Information on basic physical and chemical properties
General Information
Form: Solid in various forms
Color: Grey
Odor: Odorless
Odor threshold: Not determined.
pH-value: Not applicable.
Change in condition
Melting point/Melting range: 419.5 °C (787 °F)
Boiling point/Boiling range: 907 °C (1665 °F)
Sublimation temperature / start: Not determined
Flammability (solid, gaseous): Not determined.
Ignition temperature: Not determined
Decomposition temperature: Not determined
Auto igniting: Not determined.
Danger of explosion: Not determined.
Explosion limits:
Lower: Not determined
Upper: Not determined
Vapor pressure: Not applicable.
Density at 20 °C (68 °F): 7.14 g/cm³ (59.583 lbs/gal)
Relative density: Not determined.
Vapor density: Not applicable.
Evaporation rate: Not applicable.
Solubility in / Miscibility with Water: Insoluble
Partition coefficient (n-octanol/water): Not determined.
dynamic: Not applicable.
kinematic: Not applicable.
Other information
No further relevant information available.


No information known.
Chemical stability
Stable under recommended storage conditions.
Thermal decomposition / conditions to be avoided:
Decomposition will not occur if used and
stored according to specifications.
Possibility of hazardous reactions
No dangerous reactions known
Conditions to avoid
No further relevant information available.
Incompatible materials:
No information known.
Hazardous decomposition products:
Metal oxide fume


Information on toxicological effects
Acute toxicity:
The Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) contains acute toxicity data for components in this product.
LD/LC50 values that are relevant for classification: No data
Skin irritation or corrosion: No irritant effect.
Eye irritation or corrosion: No irritant effect.
Sensitization: No sensitizing effects known.
Germ cell mutagenicity: No effects known.
EPA-I: Data are inadequate for an assessment of human carcinogenic potential.
The Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) contains tumorigenic and/or carc inogenic and/or neoplastic data for this substance.
Reproductive toxicity: No effects known.
Specific target organ system toxicity - repeated exposure: No effects known.
Specific target organ system toxicity - single exposure: No effects known.
Aspiration hazard: No effects known.
Subacute to chronic toxicity:
The Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) contains multiple dose toxicity data for this substance.
Additional toxicological information:
To the best of our knowledge the acute and chronic toxicity of this substance is not fully known.
Carcinogenic categories
OSHA-Ca (Occupational Safety & Health Administration)
Substance is not listed.


Aquatic toxicity:
No further relevant information available.
Persistence and degradability
No further relevant information available.
Bioaccumulative potential
No further relevant information available.
Mobility in soil
No further relevant information available.
Additional ecological information:
General notes:
Do not allow material to be released to the environment without proper governmental permits.
Avoid transfer into the environment.
Results of PBT and vPvB assessment
PBT: Not applicable.
vPvB: Not applicable.
Other adverse effects
No further relevant information available.


Waste treatment methods
Consult state, local or national regulations to ensure proper disposal.
Uncleaned packagings:
Disposal must be made according to official regulations.


Not applicable
UN proper shipping name
Not applicable
Transport hazard class(es)
Not applicable
Packing group
Not applicable
Environmental hazards:
Not applicable.
Special precautions for user
Not applicable.
Transport in bulk according to Annex II of MARPOL73/78 and the IBC Code
Not applicable.
Transport/Additional information:
Marine Pollutant (DOT):
UN "Model Regulation":


Safety, health and environmental regulations/legislation specific for the substance or mixture
National regulations
All components of this product are listed in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Toxic Substances Control Act Chemical substance Inventory.
All components of this product are listed on the Canadian Domestic Substances List (DSL).
SARA Section 313 (specific toxic chemical listings)
7440-66-6 Zinc
California Proposition 65
Prop 65 - Chemicals known to cause cancer
Substance is not listed.
Prop 65 - Developmental toxicity
Substance is not listed.
Prop 65 - Developmental toxicity, female
Substance is not listed.
Prop 65 - Developmental toxicity, male
Substance is not listed.
Information about limitation of use:
For use only by technically qualified individuals.
This product is subject to the reporting requirements of section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act of 1986 and 40CFR372.
Other regulations, limitations and prohibitive regulations
Substance of Very High Concern (SVHC) according to the REACH Regulations (EC) No. 1907/2006.
Substance is not listed.
The conditions of restrictions according to Article 67 and Annex XVII of the Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 (REACH) for the manufacturing, placing on the market and use must be observed.
Substance is not listed.
Annex XIV of the REACH Regulations (requiring Authorisation for use)
Substance is not listed.
Chemical safety assessment:
A Chemical Safety Assessment has not been carried out.


Safety Data Sheet according to Regulation (EC) No. 1907/2006 (REACH). The above information is believed to be correct but does not purport to be all inclusive and shall be used only as a guide. The information in this document is based on the present state of our knowledge and is applicable to the product with regard to appropriate safety precautions. It does not represent any guarantee of the properties of the product. American Elements shall not be held liable for any damage resulting from handling or from contact with the above product. See reverse side of invoice or packing slip for additional terms and conditions of sale. COPYRIGHT 1997-2016 AMERICAN ELEMENTS. LICENSED GRANTED TO MAKE UNLIMITED PAPER COPIES FOR INTERNAL USE ONLY.

Zinc Isotopes

Zinc has 5 stable isotopes: 64Zn, 66Zn, 67Zn, 68Zn, and 70Zn.

Nuclide Isotopic Mass Half-Life Mode of Decay Nuclear Spin Magnetic Moment Binding Energy (MeV) Natural Abundance
(% by atom)
54Zn 53.99295(43)# N/A 2p to 52Ni 0+ N/A 410.04 -
55Zn 54.98398(27)# 20# ms [>1.6 µs] 2p to 53Ni; ß+ to 55Cu 5/2-# N/A 426.5 -
56Zn 55.97238(28)# 36(10) ms ß+ to 56Cu 0+ N/A 444.83 -
57Zn 56.96479(11)# 38(4) ms ß+ + p to 56Ni; ß+ to 57Cu 7/2-# N/A 460.36 -
58Zn 57.95459(5) 84(9) ms ß+ + p to 57Ni; ß+ to 58Cu 0+ N/A 477.76 -
59Zn 58.94926(4) 182.0(18) ms ß+ to 59Cu; ß+ + p to 58Ni 3/2- N/A 490.5 -
60Zn 59.941827(11) 2.38(5) min EC to 60Cu 0+ N/A 506.03 -
61Zn 60.939511(17) 89.1(2) s EC to 61Cu 3/2- N/A 515.97 -
62Zn 61.934330(11) 9.186(13) h EC to 62Cu 0+ N/A 528.71 -
63Zn 62.9332116(17) 38.47(5) min EC to 63Cu 3/2- -0.28164 537.72 -
64Zn 63.9291422(7) Observationally Stable - 0+ N/A 549.52 48.63
65Zn 64.9292410(7) 243.66(9) d EC to 65Cu 5/2- 0.769 557.6 -
66Zn 65.9260334(10) STABLE - 0+ N/A 568.47 27.9
67Zn 66.9271273(10) STABLE - 5/2- 0.875479 575.62 4.1
68Zn 67.9248442(10) STABLE - 0+ N/A 586.49 18.75
69Zn 68.9265503(10) 56.4(9) min ß- to 69Ga 1/2- N/A 592.71 -
70Zn 69.9253193(21) Observationally Stable - 0+ N/A 601.72 0.62
71Zn 70.927722(11) 2.45(10) min ß- to 71Ga 1/2- N/A 607.94 -
72Zn 71.926858(7) 46.5(1) h ß- to 72Ga 0+ N/A 616.95 -
73Zn 72.92978(4) 23.5(10) s ß- to 73Ga (1/2)- N/A 622.23 -
74Zn 73.92946(5) 95.6(12) s ß- to 74Ga 0+ N/A 630.31 -
75Zn 74.93294(8) 10.2(2) s ß- to 75Ga (7/2+)# N/A 635.59 -
76Zn 75.93329(9) 5.7(3) s ß- to 76Ga 0+ N/A 642.74 -
77Zn 76.93696(13) 2.08(5) s ß- to 77Ga (7/2+)# N/A 648.02 -
78Zn 77.93844(10) 1.47(15) s ß- to 78Ga 0+ N/A 654.24 -
79Zn 78.94265(28)# 0.995(19) s ß- to 79Ga; ß- + n to 78Ga (9/2+) N/A 658.59 -
80Zn 79.94434(18) 545(16) ms ß- to 80Ga; ß- + n to 79Ga 0+ N/A 664.81 -
81Zn 80.95048(32)# 290(50) ms ß- to 81Ga; ß- + n to 80Ga 5/2+# N/A 667.29 -
82Zn 81.95442(54)# 100# ms [>300 ns] ß- to 82Ga 0+ N/A 671.65 -
83Zn 82.96103(54)# 80# ms [>300 ns] Unknown 5/2+# N/A 673.2 -