Zinc is the 24th most abundant element located in the Earth's crust. It's also found in oceans, streams and the sun. The largest mineable amounts of zinc are located in Asia, Australia and the United States.
Zinc is atomic number 30 on the Periodic Table of Elements. Its symbol is Zn and it's considered a Transition Metal. There are 30 known isotopes of zinc, five of which are stable. Zinc has a melting point of 419.58 degrees Celsius and a boiling point of 907 degrees Celsius. It's brittle at low temperatures and malleable between 100 to 150 degrees Celsius.
In industrial uses, zinc is used to make a variety of alloys, including brass, bronze nickel silver and aluminum solder. Automotive and electrical industries use zinc for die castings, and it's also found in pharmaceuticals, batteries, soaps, paints, inks, plastics and cosmetics.
Zinc is essential for animal and human health. Deficiencies in animals make weight gain more difficult. It may be used as a dietary supplement for humans as zinc oxide, zinc acetate and zinc gluconate. It's thought to aid in immune function and there is evidence that taking zinc acetate on a regular basis reduces the duration of the common cold.