Element, iron group. Until recently vanadium was thought not to occur in its native state in the Earth's crust.
Specific gravity: 6.033 calculated
Colour: Steel grey
Solubility: Resistant to attack by alkalis, hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid and salt water (ChC)
Abundance: In the Earth’s crust, 120 parts per million by mass, 50 parts per million by moles; in the Solar System, 400 parts per billion by mass, 9 parts per billion by moles (ChC)
When extracted from its ore vanadium is a bright white, soft, ductile metal with good structural strength. When present in compounds,
it exists mostly as V5+
Vanadium is a new mineral (2016) found in sublimates of high-temperature fumaroles of the Colima volcano, Mexico. The mineral precipitates over a narrow temperature range of 550–680oC, and occurs in association with colimaite and shcherbinaite. Native vanadium was found in natural incrustations and on the inner wall of a silica tube inserted into vents and subsequently in the adjacent rock of the “Z3 fumarole.” It forms smooth, irregular to flattened crystals, 5–20 μm in diameter with smaller irregular crystals observed in silica tubes (AM 101.2783).
Vanadium oxidises in air at around 660oC to the pentoxide V2O5 (shcherbinaite when naturally occurring) (ChC).
Vanadium-bearing minerals include:
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