Chemical element, symbol Ni and atomic number 28 / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Nickel is a chemical element with symbol Ni and atomic number 28. It is a silvery-white lustrous metal with a slight golden tinge. Nickel is a hard and ductile transition metal. Pure nickel is chemically reactive but large pieces are slow to react with air under standard conditions because a passivation layer of nickel oxide forms on the surface that prevents further corrosion. Even so, pure native nickel is found in Earth's crust only in tiny amounts, usually in ultramafic rocks,[5][6] and in the interiors of larger nickel–iron meteorites that were not exposed to oxygen when outside Earth's atmosphere.

Quick facts: Nickel, Appearance, Standard atomic weight .m...
Nickel, 28Ni
A pitted and lumpy piece of nickel, with the top surface cut flat
AppearanceLustrous, metallic, and silver with a gold tinge
Standard atomic weight Ar°(Ni)
  • 58.6934±0.0004
  • 58.693±0.001 (abridged)[1]
Nickel in the periodic table


Atomic number (Z)28
Groupgroup 10
Periodperiod 4
Block  d-block
Electron configuration[Ar] 3d8 4s2 or [Ar] 3d9 4s1
Electrons per shell2, 8, 16, 2 or 2, 8, 17, 1
Physical properties
Phase at STPsolid
Melting point1728 K (1455 °C, 2651 °F)
Boiling point3003 K (2730 °C, 4946 °F)
Density (near r.t.)8.908 g/cm3
when liquid (at m.p.)7.81 g/cm3
Heat of fusion17.48 kJ/mol
Heat of vaporization379 kJ/mol
Molar heat capacity26.07 J/(mol·K)
Vapor pressure
P (Pa) 1 10 100 1 k 10 k 100 k
at T (K) 1783 1950 2154 2410 2741 3184
Atomic properties
Oxidation states−2, −1, 0, +1,[2] +2, +3, +4[3] (a mildly basic oxide)
ElectronegativityPauling scale: 1.91
Ionization energies
  • 1st: 737.1 kJ/mol
  • 2nd: 1753.0 kJ/mol
  • 3rd: 3395 kJ/mol
  • (more)
Atomic radiusempirical: 124 pm
Covalent radius124±4 pm
Van der Waals radius163 pm
Color lines in a spectral range
Spectral lines of nickel
Other properties
Natural occurrenceprimordial
Crystal structure face-centered cubic (fcc)
Face-centered cubic crystal structure for nickel
Speed of sound thin rod4900 m/s (at r.t.)
Thermal expansion13.4 µm/(m⋅K) (at 25 °C)
Thermal conductivity90.9 W/(m⋅K)
Electrical resistivity69.3 nΩ⋅m (at 20 °C)
Magnetic orderingferromagnetic
Young's modulus200 GPa
Shear modulus76 GPa
Bulk modulus180 GPa
Poisson ratio0.31
Mohs hardness4.0
Vickers hardness638 MPa
Brinell hardness667–1600 MPa
CAS Number7440-02-0
Discovery and first isolationAxel Fredrik Cronstedt (1751)
Isotopes of nickel
Main isotopes[4] Decay
abun­dance half-life (t1/2) mode pro­duct
58Ni 68.1% stable
59Ni trace 7.6×104 y ε 59Co
60Ni 26.2% stable
61Ni 1.14% stable
62Ni 3.63% stable
63Ni synth 100 y β 63Cu
64Ni 0.926% stable
Symbol_category_class.svg Category: Nickel
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Meteoric nickel is found in combination with iron, a reflection of the origin of those elements as major end products of supernova nucleosynthesis. An iron–nickel mixture is thought to compose Earth's outer and inner cores.[7]

Use of nickel (as natural meteoric nickel–iron alloy) has been traced as far back as 3500 BCE. Nickel was first isolated and classified as an element in 1751 by Axel Fredrik Cronstedt, who initially mistook the ore for a copper mineral, in the cobalt mines of Los, Hälsingland, Sweden. The element's name comes from a mischievous sprite of German miner mythology, Nickel (similar to Old Nick), who personified the fact that copper-nickel ores resisted refinement into copper. An economically important source of nickel is the iron ore limonite, which is often 1–2% nickel. Other important nickel ore minerals include pentlandite and a mix of Ni-rich natural silicates known as garnierite. Major production sites include the Sudbury region, Canada (which is thought to be of meteoric origin), New Caledonia in the Pacific, and Norilsk, Russia.

Nickel is one of four elements (the others are iron, cobalt, and gadolinium)[8] that are ferromagnetic at about room temperature. Alnico permanent magnets based partly on nickel are of intermediate strength between iron-based permanent magnets and rare-earth magnets. The metal is used chiefly in alloys and corrosion-resistant plating. About 68% of world production is used in stainless steel. A further 10% is used for nickel-based and copper-based alloys, 9% for plating, 7% for alloy steels, 3% in foundries, and 4% in other applications such as in rechargeable batteries,[9] including those in electric vehicles (EVs).[10] Nickel is widely used in coins, though nickel-plated objects sometimes provoke nickel allergy. As a compound, nickel has a number of niche chemical manufacturing uses, such as a catalyst for hydrogenation, cathodes for rechargeable batteries, pigments and metal surface treatments.[11] Nickel is an essential nutrient for some microorganisms and plants that have enzymes with nickel as an active site.[12]