The Instrumentation Center

Mercury

hg box

Contributor: Brenda Leady
About the Display: 

  • Mercury thermometer - several states now have bans on mercury thermometers. The sale of mercury thermometers, thermostats, and novelty items containing mercury has been banned since 2007. Mercury has also been phased out of schools in Ohio, as no school through 12th grade is permitted to purchase mercury, mercury compounds, or mercury-containing measuring devices for classroom use (Source).
  • Look at the thermometer: it is 33 oCelsius inside the box. Who would have know that the LEDs cause so much heat? The metal Gallium melts at 30 oC.  Check it out!
  • The Mad Hatter -  hatters used to use mercurous nitrate (Hg2(NO3)2) to cure felt. The exposure to mercury vapors caused many hatters to go mad due to mercury poisoning!

blAbout the Contributor: Dr. Brenda Leady is a Lecturer for the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Toledo whose doctoral research involved mercury bioaccumulation in Lake Erie. 

Back to the Periodic Table

Symbol: Hg

Atomic Number: 80

Atomic Mass: 200.59 u

Electron Configuration: [Xe] 4f145d106s2

Year Discovered: known since ancient times!

Discovered By: unknown!

Last Updated: 9/13/17