When we were kids, the one thing which always fascinates us saw a plane flying in the air. Once it takes off, it just disappears in the clouds. This makes us think how it is that plane flys in the air, and we humans can’t and what makes it fly so high against the gravity of earth, the one strong force from which we all are bound. How such a massive object like plane win over the gravity and fly off in the air? Well, the answer to your curiosity is lithium. The first element you are going to see when you have your first encounter with the periodic table is lithium, which is located at the top left. Today we are going to talk about the Lithium properties and its uses. 

Lithium is the lightest metal that we have found on earth, and the planes and the fighter jets you see in the air, their body is made from lithium. The batteries you have in your mobile phones, and in your smartwatch, all are made from lithium. Button cells you see in clocks, they are made from lithium too. So yeah, lithium is everywhere around you, giving your gadgets the charge they need to survive the day. Lithium’s atomic number is 3, and it’s the element that has many usages in our daily lives apart from being used in batteries. 

Lithium Uses

Now we have talked a lot about lithium, let’s look at its uses and why we are using it in such cases.

First, lithium element is used in medication for the treatment of Bipolar disorder, the US food and Drug Administration has given a green signal for its usage, as it helps to make patients calm quickly. In addition to this, Lithium carbonate also used in a small amount to prevent further episodes.

Also, a lot of doctors recommend lithium as an antidepressant. But first, you need to try other medications before moving to a lithium-based dosage. Nobody knows how lithium works, helping people to calm their senses and make them feel good. The only research suggests that it cuts off certain neurons in the brain, which results in a calming effect.

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Now coming to its most significant usage, if we were not able to extract lithium, all the smartphones that you now see won’t be able to exist in your pockets. Lithium element is the answer to all our battery problems; it is lightweight and provides us rechargeability. In the modern world, the Lithium-Ion battery doesn’t have any competitors. From its inception in 1990, it has been a customer favorite and has almost no issues. 

The bikes you see in the tour de France are made from Alumunium - Lithium alloy to give the cycle the lightweight it needs and the strength to its frame.  

Another way industry uses lithium is by making special glasses by Lithium oxide. Lithium is quite a hygroscopic material, meaning it’s a substance that is great in absorbing moisture from the air. Thus, it is used in buildings and manufacturing industries to keep the moisture in control. 

When you are lighting up a firecracker or an air rocket, you see the red color coming out from it as it explodes. Well, we are happy to tell you that the red color comes from lithium. So the next time when you see a bright red color in the sky from a firework explosion, remember it’s a Lithium which is burning to give you happiness. 

Lithium Properties

Lithium properties are the same as other elements present in its Alkali metal family. The melting point of lithium is 180.5 C. On the other hand, and the boiling point is at 1342 C. when you put the lithium at room temperature, it is the least dense element with the valency of 1. Thus, it is the lightest metal in the world, and lithium density is almost half of that of water. 

Meaning you can put a piece of lithium carefully on water and it will float. Yes, a metal will float on the water. Lithium atomic mass is 6.941 u. If you are looking for a metallic Lithium, you will see it has a silvery appearance. It does react with water but not as violently as Sodium. 

Lithium is the first 3 element that came into existence after the big bang, alongside Hydrogen and Helium. 

The atomic number of lithium is 3 due to the presence of 3 protons in its nucleus. Because of its reactiveness.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Does Tesla Cars Use Lithium Battery?

The lithium symbol in the periodic table is Li. its single valence electron makes it a good conductor of electricity, that’s why we are using it in every form of battery. Even the new Tesla cars that run entirely on electricity use 100 kWh lithium battery to make them go from 0-100 in the record time of 1.9 seconds. 

2. How to Stop a Fire Caused by Lithium Burning?

If you want to put out the fire started by the Lithium metal, you need to keep the water away, because reacts to the lithium metal, and then make things worse making a fire to spread at a faster rate. The best way to deal with Lithium related fire is to use a powder fire extinguisher. Lithium metal if you burn, will give you bright white light, in addition to this, it requires special handling cause lithium is highly corrosive and extremely flammable. Being so reactive, you need to keep it away from the air; thus, to store it, you need to put it inside the oil. Also, make sure your skin doesn’t touch it as it can burn your skin upon contact. 

3. What Does Lithium Mean?

The name Lithium came from the Greek word “Litho,” which means “stone.” even though the word Lithium means the stone, yet it is one of the softest metal present on earth. You can cut a piece of Lithium rock from your kitchen knife.