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What the name means: Titanium is named after the Greek mythological children of Uranus and Gaia, the Titans.
Who identified titanium?: A Cornish churchman, William Gregor, was the first to recognise evidence of the new element in rocks from the Menachan Valley in 1791. He wasn't too confident about his find but he named the possible new element menachin. It was a German scientist, Martin Klaproth, who, in 1795 made the same observations when studying certain mineral samples from Poland. Klaproth gave this new element the name titanium. In 1825 Jöns Jakob Berzelius, working in Sweden, managed to extract an impure sample of titanium. In 1887, Lars Fredrik Nilson and Otto Pettersson managed to isolate a 95% pure sample but it was not until 1910 that Matthew A. Hunter, working in the USA, produced titanium metal with 99.9% purity.
STP = standard temperature and pressure.
About titanium: Titanium is shiny, lighter than steel but much stronger. It is never found as the free element in nature, but minerals containing titanium are common; in fact, titanium is the ninth most common metal in the Earth's crust. Titanium has been detected in the Sun and in meteorites. It has been found in Moon-rock brought back by the Apollo mission spacecraft. It is also found in the human body and in plant material.
Titanium oxide is pure white and is used as a pigment in paints.
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