Mercury does freeze; its freezing point, according to Denver University, is -38.9 degrees Celsius (-38.02 degrees Fahrenheit). The idea that mercury does not freeze may be related to the fact that mercury is used in thermometers, but in fact, mercury's relatively high freezing point is a disadvantage compared to other substances that can be used in thermometers and have a lower freezing point.Continue Reading
Mercury, the poisonous silvery substance named for the Roman god responsible for guiding dead souls to the underworld, is a liquid at room temperature, and it is the only pure metal with this characteristic. However, that doesn't mean that mercury doesn't freeze. It does have a relatively high boiling point (356.58 degrees Celsius, or 673.844 degrees Fahrenheit), but it does freeze at a temperature that is colder than water. However, compared to alcohol, which is a safer alternative as a thermometer component, mercury has a relatively high freezing point. Alcohol freezes at -114 degrees Celsius (-173.2 degrees Fahrenheit), making it a more versatile material for measuring cold.
Though it has a poisonous vapor, mercury does have some advantages over alcohol as a thermometer medium. It has a much higher boiling point than alcohol, which boils at 60 degrees Celsius (140 degrees Fahrenheit). It is also durable, accurate and easy to calibrate.Learn more about Atoms & Molecules
Mercury thermometers do not work below the freezing point of mercury, which is minus 38.83 degrees Celsius or minus 37.89 degrees Fahrenheit. Mercury vapors and physical contact with mercury are very dangerous. Breakage of a mercury thermometer requires proper equipment and procedures to safely clean up and dispose of mercury spills.Full Answer >
Titanium has a melting point of 1,941 Kelvin, or 3,287 degrees Celsius, making it one of the more heat-resistant elements on the periodic table. Titanium is the lightest refractory metal, which is a group distinguished by its resistance to heat.Full Answer >
Mercury is an element that enters the environment through human activity and natural sources. It is a natural component of the Earth’s crust; however, the majority of mercury comes from improper disposal of mercury-containing products and the burning of fossil fuels. Natural emissions of mercury occur through the erosion of rocks, eruption of volcanoes and decomposition of soil.Full Answer >
Because Mercury is one of the five visible planets to the naked eye, its original discovery is indeterminable. It was known during prehistoric times and was mentioned in the second millennium B.C. by Sumerians.Full Answer >