Beryllium - Be
Beryllium is a toxic bivalent element, steel gray, strong, light-weight, primarily used as hardening agent in alloys. Beryllium has one of the highest melting points of the light metals. It has excellent thermal conductivity, is nonmagnetic, it resists attack by concentrated nitric acid and at standard temperature and pressures beryllium resist oxidation when exposts to air.
Beryllium is used as an alloying agent in the production of beryllium-copper. Thanks to their electrical and thermal conductivity, high strenght and hardness, non magnetic properties, good resistance, dimensional stability over a wide temperature range beryllium-copper alloys are used in many applications. A typical application of beryllium-copper alloys is in the defense and aerospace industries.
Beryllium in the environment
The beryllium content on Earth crust is 2.6 ppm, in soil 6 ppm. Beryllium in soil can pass into the plants grown on it, provided it in a soluble form. Typical levels in plants vary between 1 and 40 ppb, too low to affect animals which eat these plants.
Back to the periodic table of elements.