Radium can be found in the carnotite sands of Colorado. Greater amounts can be found in a region of Canada known as the Great Bear Lake. Radium can also be found in large amounts in some African countries, such as Zaire.
Pure radium is a solid metal which has a silver color. Its melting and boiling point is similar to that of Barium. Radium is known as the symbol of Ra on the periodic table of the elements. It is a radioactive metal that occurs naturally. It exists in low levels in virtually all rock, plants, animals, soil and water. Radium is radioactive and can exist in the environment in many forms. It can be found in varying levels throughout the earth. Radium is considered to be a decayed product of uranium and is not necessary for living organisms; it can in fact harm organisms because it replaces the calcium contained in bones. Exposure to radium is also known to cause cancer by killing and mutating cells in the body. In the past, Radium was used as a paint for watches, planes and clocks. Today, it is used in cancer treatments and in the tips of lighting rods to improve their effectiveness.