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Name Vanadium
Symbol V
Atomic number 47.9
Atomic mass 50.9 amu
Classification Transition metal
Crystal structure Cubic
Color Silver
Date of discovery 1830
Name of discoverer Nils Sefstrom
Name origin After Vanadis (Scandinavian goddess)
Uses Catalyst, dye, color-fixer
Obtained from Minerals (patronite, vanadinite)

Vanadium is a silvery metal that resists corrosion.


Vanadium was actually discovered twice. The first time was in 1801 by a Professor of Mineralogy in Mexico City, named Andrés Manuel del Rio. He found it in a specimen of vanadite, Pb5(VO4)3Cl. The second time vanadium was discovered was in 1831 by the Swedish chemist Nil Gabriel Selfström at Stockholm. He separated it from a sample of cast iron made from ore.[1]

Henry Roscoe showed that these previous samples of the metal were really vanadium nitride (VN) and produced pure vanadium was in 1869.[2]



Vanadium pentoxide is used as a catalyst to make sulfuric acid. Vanadate, another compound of vanadium, protects steel from rust and corrosion. Vanadium dioxide is used to make glass coatings which block infrared radiation. Other vanadium compounds are used for fake jewelry and superconducting magnets.[3]


Along with chromium, Vanadium is one of the minerals which is believed to help control blood sugar. It is sometimes used for diabetes in place of animal insulin injections.[4] However, there has been no official study to discover how much vanadium is required by the human body, so many conventional doctors avoid suggesting this supplementation.[5]