The electron configuration of tellurium in its ground state is [Kr].4d10.5s2.5p4. Tellurium is a lustrous, silvery white metalloid that was first discovered in the gold mines of Transylvania by the mine inspector Franz Joseph Moller von Reichenstein. The element was named in 1798 by Reichenstein's colleague Martin Klaproth. The element's name comes from the Latin word for "earth."Continue Reading
Tellurium is one of the rarest minerals on earth and is rarely used in its pure form. It's brittle and can be easily converted into a gray powder. Tellurium has an atomic weight of 127.60, a density of 6.240 and an atomic radius of 123pm. Its symbol is Te, and its atomic weight is 52. It can be found in the P block of the periodic table.
In the form of tellurium suboxide, tellurium is used for rewritable CD and DVD disks. The element is also used in solar cells, memory chips and thermoelectric coolers.
Tellurium is best obtained as a by-product of refined blister copper and lead.
One drawback to use of the element is that it's somewhat toxic. Even exposure to a tiny bit of tellurium afflicts human beings with a garlic odor on the breath that lasts for several weeks.Learn more about Atoms & Molecules