Vanadium belongs to Group 5, which is one of the groups in the transition metal family. The other transition metals in Group 5 are niobium, tantalum and dubnium. All of these elements have five electrons in their outermost shells.
Vanadium takes its name from the Scandinavian goddess of beauty, Vanadis, who was also known as Freya. It was discovered by the Mexican chemist Andrés Manuel del Rio in 1801. Vanadium does not corrode and is a component of pipes and tubes used by the chemical industry. Its most practical compound is vanadium pentoxide, which is used in ceramic catalysts and to fix dyes to fabric.
Vanadium has an atomic symbol V and an atomic number 23.