Iron is one of the most abundant elements in Earth’s crust. Iron is found mainly in three ores. They are hematite (red), magnetite (black), and limonite (brown). It is found in considerable quantities in stars, meteorites, and rocky planets. In nature, iron is rarely found pure; rather, it can be found as iron ore, a combined mass of iron and other minerals and elements when the iron is mixed with oxygen and other elements such as sand and clays. Iron is a metal. Here, we will learn where iron is found. We will also discuss the use of iron, iron element and who discovered iron.
Iron as an Element
The iron element is a chemical element with Fe as its symbol. The atomic number of iron is 26. It is a metal belonging to the first transition series and group 8 of the periodic table. The atomic states of iron elements are from negative to positive, including zero. It is a metal which means its atoms are tightly packed and the force of attraction between the subatomic particles is very high. It has a very high melting point and a very high density as well.
Uses of Iron
Discovery of Iron
Archaeologists believe that the discovery of iron was made by the Hittites of Ancient Egypt somewhere between 5000 and 3000 BCE. At this time, they hammered the metal to create tools and weapons. Then they found and extracted this from meteorites and used the ore to make spearheads, tools and other trinkets.
Properties of Iron
The properties of iron are as follows:
It is lustrous (lustrous means it has a shiny surface that reflects light).
Ductile (Ductile means that it is capable of being hammered and turned out too thin).
Silver-grey metal belongs to group VIII of the periodic table.
It Exists in four distinct crystalline forms.
It can rust in damp air but not in dry air.
Iron dissolves readily in the dilute acids.
Iron is a good conductor of heat and electricity.
Iron can be magnetised easily.
Iron Scientific Name
The Ferrum is an iron scientific name (Latin name). The symbol Fe comes from the scientific name of iron.
Extraction of Iron from its ores
Iron is generally found in its oxide form. It is extracted from its ore with the help of a blast furnace. Firstly the oxygen present in its ore is removed. For removal of oxygen, carbon is used as carbon is more reactive than iron oxygen gets easily attached with carbon forming carbon dioxide. In this way, pure iron can be extracted.
Uses of Iron
Iron is used for different purposes. In making steels like carbon steels. Iron acts as an alloy to make steel. These steels are used to make bicycle chains, cutting tools, etc. Iron is also used for making pipes, valves, and pumps. It is used in vehicles like cars, trucks, buses, trains, etc. In the home, appliances such as refrigerators, washing machines, stoves, dishwashers, etc. Also used for making utensils like forks, spoons, knives, etc. The use of iron also includes making surgical instruments and jewellery as well. Iron also acts as an alloy with nickel and chromium to form stainless steel (steel and stainless are both different).
Iron is known as a metal since it has properties like malleable and ductile and has high density and hardness. Iron is a chemical element and has a symbol of Fe. Iron is rarely found to be pure. It is always mixed with other metals. Iron is found in other minerals like magnetite and taconite. One of the common elements found in the universe is Iron. The iron has Fe as its symbol with the atomic number 26. In addition to all other uses, iron is also used in making surgical instruments and jewelry. We have already discussed in this article, where iron is found and who discovered iron.