Thorium

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Thorium
Name Thorium
Symbol Th
Atomic number 90
Atomic mass 232.03806 amu
Normal state Solid
Classification Metallic
Crystal structure Cubic face centered
Color soft, ductile silvery metal
Date of discovery 1829
Name of discoverer WJöns Berzelius
Name origin Named after Thor, the Norse god of war.
Uses Used in the manufacture of strong alloys and ultraviolet photoelectric cells. Can be bombarded with neutrons to make uranium-233, a nuclear fuel.
Obtained from Found in various minerals like monazite and thorite and dispersed on pegmatite rocks.


Thorium is a radioactive, naturally occurring chemical element. The symbol for Thorium is Th and it has an atomic number of 90. It was discovered by Morten Thrane Esmark and identified by Jons Jakob Berzelius in 1828. It is named after Thor, the Norse god of war. Thorium is a viable alternative to Uranium as a fuel for nuclear reactors. The amount of long life radioactive material produced in the thorium reaction is significantly smaller than that of the uranium reaction. Another advantage over Uranium based reactors is the lack of production of weapons grade radioactive material. This means that thorium reactors can be placed in less stable countries without the fear of nuclear proliferation.

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