Phosphorus Facts

Phosphorus Facts
Phosphorus (P) has an atomic number of fifteen and therefore contains fifteen protons in the nucleus of one atom. It exists in nature in two key forms, white phosphorus and red phosphorus.
Interesting Phosphorus Facts:
Hennig Brand discovered phosphorus in 1669 by extracting it from buckets of urine.
It is sometimes referred to as the "Devil's Element," because it was the thirteenth element discovered and because of its explosive properties.
Phosphorus was the first element discovered that had not already been in use by civilizations for hundreds of years.
Three other allotropes, violet phosphorus, scarlet phosphorus and black phosphorus, are less common.
It is a vital part of living cells, including nervous tissue, bones, and the protoplasm of many cells.
It is a part of DNA, RNA, ATP, and cell membranes.
Typical phosphorus is a waxy white solid.
Pure phosphorus is colorless.
It is spontaneously combustible in air.
Most commercially produced phosphorus compounds are used as fertilizer.
It is also used in detergents and pesticides, among other household uses.
There are twenty-three recognized isotopes of phosphorus, but only one is stable.
The stable isotope, P-31, has an abundance of 100 percent.
Phosphorus is not available in nature on its own, but is found in many minerals.
Guano has long been a source of commercial phosphorus.
Around half of the world's phosphorus reserves are found in the Middle East.
Scientists are divided on when the supply of phosphorus at its current rate of consumption will run out.
Some estimate the world's supply at this rate will remain steady for over three hundred years, while others feel it is closer to fifty years.

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Periodic Table Facts
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