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Last updated date: 05th Mar 2024
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What is Scandium?

Scandium is an element in the periodic table with the number 21 and the icon "Sc."

Scandium is taken from Scandinavia's precious minerals. Once it's out in the air, it turns a pale yellow or pinkish. Scandium also affects hydrogen gas and dissolves in chemicals.

Scandium metal is made by heating scandium fluoride (ScF3) with calcium material. one can find this unique chemical in things like goggles, energy-saving lamps, fluorescent lights, and TVs.

Chemical Elements - Scandium


Scandium has been evidenced to cut down on cracking when high-strength aluminium alloys are welded. Scandium is being used increasingly as an excellent catalyst to polish glass. Aluminum-scandium alloys are primarily used in the aviation industry and for athletic apparel (like baseball, bikes, and so on.)

Scandium is found in nature, but only in tiny amounts. It is the 50th most common element on Earth and is located in small quantities in more than 800 mineral deposits. The total amount made will only be 50 kg a year. When mixed with aluminium and aluminium-based metals, scandium would slow the growth of grains at high temperatures.

Characteristics and Properties of Scandium

Scandium is a smooth, silvery transition component found in precious minerals from Sweden. Once it's out in the air, it gets a slightly yellow or pink tint. Scandium turns black when exposed to air and burns quickly once it catches fire. It turns hydrogen gas into water and dissolves in many acids. When scandium fluoride and calcium metal are heated together, they turn into pure scandium.

There are many things about scandium that make it different from other elements. Here are some of the physical characteristics and properties of scandium:

  • It looks like a metal that is silvery white.

  • It's not too hard or too soft.

  • Scandium rusts when exposed to air and burns easily.

  • Water responds with scandium.

  • The metal's melting point is 1541oC, and its heat capacity is 2836oC. The density of scandium is 2.99 grams per cubic centimetre.

Where is Scandium Found on Earth?

Scandium is not found in the environment by itself.

Scandium on the Earth

If one considers where scandium is found on Earth, the answer is that it is not found in the environment by itself. Instead, it is found in tiny quantities in over 820 different minerals. The solely concentrated contributors are the rare raw materials, thortveitite, compliant, and gadolinite found in Scandinavia and Madagascar. In the business world, scandium is made when uranium is refined. 

How is Scandium Used Today? 

Scandium is mainly used in scientific research. It has potential because its density is nearly as low as aluminium’s, and its melting point is much greater. An aluminium-scandium alloy has been used in high-end bike frames, baseball bats, and Russian MIG jet fighters.

By adding scandium iodide to mercury vapour phase lamps, a very bright light source that looks like sunlight can be made. These lamps assist TV cameras in showing colours well when used indoors or in the early evening.

In refining oil, the chemical element scandium-46 serves as a tracer to track the motion of different fractions. It could also be used to find leaks in pipes that are buried.


Scandinavia is where Scandium got its name. Most of these minerals can be found in Scandinavia. Ytterbium, a component of scandium, was separated from euxenite and gadolinite by chemist Lars Nilson.

Scandium has the fewest atoms of any transition metal. It is generally guarded against other components and does not rust or break down when exposed. It looks and works like aluminium, except it keeps its shape and overall form even at extreme temperatures.

FAQs on Scandium

1. How many electrons does scandium have?

Scandium is a chemical component with the atomic number 21. It means that its nuclear structure has twenty-one protons and twenty-one electrons. Sc stands for Scandium in the language of chemistry. There are thirteen types of isotopes for scandium.

Most of this metal's isotopes have a half-life of fewer than 120 seconds. Because the number of electrons controls how atoms behave chemically, the atomic number is a way to tell the difference between the different chemical elements.

2. How many valence electrons does scandium have?

Valence is the total number of electrons an atom must either lose or gain to get its electronic elements as close as possible to that of a noble gas or an inert gas. "Valence electrons are the unoccupied electrons inside the outermost shell." For example, there are three scandium valence electrons. 

Furthermore, the number of valence electrons assists us in figuring out the chemical characteristics of an element, like its valence or valency, which is how it bonds with some other features.

3. State some fun facts about scandium.

At room temperature, scandium is a silver-white metal that is light and gentle. Genuine scandium gets a layer of pink-yellow combustion when exposed to the atmosphere. Like aluminium, scandium is used to make alloys.

Scandium is almost as dense as aluminium but has a higher melting point. This is the first material that changes state. Scandium is a unique material frequently found in ores containing rare-earth elements. It has many of the same chemical characteristics as other rare earths too.