Science isn’t a subject for everyone. Still, if you’re in the majority of students who experience middle school, high school, or college, you’re sure to have taken at least one science class throughout the course of your education.
Chemistry is one particular branch of science that most people dread. The complicated table of periodic elements might be organized, but to a beginner, it can seem like a confusing mess of numbers and letters.
However, a brand-new—and interactive—periodic table of the elements changes all of that! Instead of confusing you with a bunch of information you don’t understand, it helps explain the elements by sharing how they are used in real life. Take a look…
If you’ve ever studied chemistry in high school, then you are more than familiar with the periodic table of the elements. However, you have also probably never seen it depicted quite like this before! This interactive table doesn’t just list the elements; it shows you how they are actually used every day. Here’s a highlight of the coolest ones…
1. Some elements, like sodium, are used every single day. You can find a healthy dose of sodium inside the salt that’s sitting on your kitchen table. Did you also know that it’s frequently used to power street lights and to make soap and glass?
2. Fluorine might sound like something out of science fiction, but it’s actually a relatively common element! You don’t need to be an alien to use it. In fact, you can find it in everything from your toothpaste to the pans you use to cook your eggs.
3. Scientists frequently use platinum while conducting their experiments in the lab. It is also used to help make the spark plugs inside of your car and to help process fats and control pollution. Oh, platinum, who knew you were so versatile?
4. When you think of potassium, you most likely imagine everybody’s favorite fruit: the banana. However, potassium is also found naturally inside of your nerve endings. It also helps pack a punch in combustible materials like matches and gun powder.
5. The next time you go into the hospital for laser surgery, your doctor will probably be using a laser powered by the element holmium! Holmium is also used to make computer discs and glass filters. It’s a rare earth metal, which means it’s very soft.
6. Americium might sound like some sort of uber-patriotic element that is used to make up the American flag (what else?), but it’s actually a radioactive actinide metal. It doesn’t occur naturally and it’s used primarily to help power stuff like smoke detectors.
7. Strontium is an alkali earth metal, which means it isn’t found in nature—but it is great at forming compounds. You see strontium in action every single Fourth of July since it’s used quite often inside of the fireworks everyone sets off to celebrate.
8. It may rhyme with the word “moron,” but boron has nothing to do with intelligence—or a lack thereof. Boron is used in everything from soap and fertilizer to the construction of sports equipment and heat-resistant semiconductors! Talk about a smart element.
9. You probably know nickel better than you know any of the other transition metal elements around. That’s because this metal is used to make coins like—you guessed it—the nickel! Nickel can also be found inside of the Earth’s core.
10. Every time a snow plow or a digger drives by you, there’s a chance for you to see manganese in action. This transition metal is used to make powerful Earth movers in addition to batteries and even stuff like common farm fertilizer.
Who knew just how often we used the elements every single day? If this is how they were taught in schools, they would probably be a heck of a lot easier to learn. Check out the full periodic table here!
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