I'm Catherine. I like sharks, chemistry, and ballet. I like humidity and hate the cold. I keep hermit crabs. I'm studying to be a chemical engineer. I've been fighting Chronic Lyme Disease and its complications since July 2009. I don't kill spiders.
Tungsten is an incredible material. It is dense and hard, and it has the lowest vapor pressure and highest melting temperature of all metals. This combination of properties makes tungsten extremely valuable for a myriad of applications, while at the same time creates great challenges in the processing of the metal.
As a child, I was fascinated by how things work and spent a lot of time taking things apart. As with most budding engineers, I rarely reassembled them. Incandescent bulbs were one of my first quarries, carefully disassembled to reveal a hidden treasure: a tungsten filament. It was amazing that this tiny wire could be heated to white-hot temperatures to produce light.
Also at an early age, I was introduced to vacuum tubes, and to this day they are magical in my eyes. When a tungsten filament is heated in a vacuum, the electrons near the surface become energetic enough to be emitted into the surrounding space. Additional tungsten conductors, in the form of grids and plates, can be added to the bulb, and the electrons can then be manipulated to switch, rectify and amplify These electronic switches were crucial in the development of modern electronics.
Tungsten at a Glance: Name: From the Swedish tung sten, meaning heavy stone. The symbol is from mineral wolframite, from which the element was originally isolated. Atomic mass: 183.84. History: Isolated in 1783 by Spanish chemists Juan Jose and Fausto Elhuyar. Occurrence: China has 75% of the world’s tungsten ores. Appearance: Silvery white metal. Behavior: Tungsten has the highest melting point and highest boiling point of all metals. Uses: Tungsten is used in high-temperature applications such as heating.
It’s almost the end of August. The Monarch Butterflies in the Midwest start their annual migration to Michoacán, Mexico during August. But, in far few numbers than about ten years ago. The chart (first image) shows a correlation between the use of Round Up (glyphosate) and Monarch colonies.
The photos are mine. The first two photos are Monarchs in the Midwest (Indiana Dunes and Fermilab). The last photo is a Monarch at Whitewater Preserve in California. I don’t think the California Monarchs migrate to Mexico.