What does it look, feel, taste, or smell like?[edit | edit source]
Cerium is a rare earth element (REE) group (in the Lanthanide series). It looks like a soft, silver-grey METAL and it’s very malleable. It tarnishes when exposed to air. It’s very reactive. It is also the most common element in the rare earth elements group. Cerium and mischmetal fires have a distinct smell that has both a metallic and smoky quality.
How was it discovered and where?[edit | edit source]
Where did its name come from?[edit | edit source]
It was named after the asteroid Ceres which was discovered in 1801. A fun fact is the asteroid was discovered two years before the element “Cerium” was found out.
What are its uses?[edit | edit source]
Cerium can have two roles in being used:[edit | edit source]
1) Cerium oxide is used to make the glass shiny again.
2) Cerium metal is used for making ferrocerium lighters. Ferrocerium lighters have a flint spark lighter that produce a little spark after the fire has been lit.
Is it dangerous?[edit | edit source]
It is dangerous because it is highly reactive with water and produces hydrogen gas during the reaction. Also it will ignite if it is scratched with a sharp object, such as a knife. BUT it can be safe if used or mixed with other elements.