Lanthanum the hidden metal
The name lanthanum is derived from ancient Greek and essentially means “to lie hidden.” The Swedish chemist and surgeon Carl Gustav Mosander discovered this metal in a mineral in 1839 and reduced it to lanthanum sulfate.
Lanthanum is a soft heavy metal which has a glittering silver color in its purest form. All of the elements that follow lanthanum in the periodic table, from cerium to lutetium (the lanthanide series), have similar properties. The most important ore for producing lanthanum is monazite, which is one of the cerite earths.
Even today, the process of extracting pure lanthanum is elaborate. As a component of mixed metals or as lanthanum oxide, it is indispensable in many high-tech devices, such as:
- fuel cells
- nickel-metal hydride batteries
- catalytic converters
- film projectors
- medical and surgical instruments
- camera lenses
- shatter-resistant ophthalmic lenses
- crystal glassware
- and much more.
GTS imports lanthanum from China in the form of lanthanum oxide. We sell lanthanum oxide as a raw material or we prepare a solution from it (e.g. lanthanum acetate solution) for the processing industry.
1312-81-8 / EINECS-no. 215-200-5 (lanthanum oxide)