Sulfur

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Attribution: Public Domain

Animated Sulfur

History

Known to the ancients; referred to in Genesis as brimstone.

Sources

Sulfur is found in meteorites. R.W. Wood suggests that the dark area near the crater Aristarchus is a sulfur deposit.

Sulfur occurs native in the vicinity of volcanos and hot springs. It is widely distributed in nature as iron pyrites, galena, sphalerite, cinnabar, stibnite, gypsum, epsom salts, celestite, barite, etc.

Compounds

Organic compounds containing sulfur are very important. Calcium sulfur, ammonium sulfate, carbon disulfide, sulfur dioxide, and hydrogen sulfide are but a few of the many important compounds of sulfur.

Uses

Sulfur is a component of black gunpowder, and is used in the vulcanization of natural rubber and a fungicide. It is also used extensively in making phosphatic fertilizers. A tremendous tonnage is used to produce sulfuric acid, the most important manufactured chemical.

It is used to make sulfite paper and other papers, to fumigate, and to bleach dried fruits. The element is a good insulator.

Sulfur is essential to life. It is a minor constituent of fats, body fluids, and skeletal minerals.

Isotopes

Eleven isotopes of sulfur exist. None of the four isotopes that are found in nature are radioactive. A finely divided form of sulfur, known as flowers of sulfur, is obtained by sublimation.

General Info

AtomicNumber
16
Symbol
S
Name
Sulfur

Atomic Info

Appearance
AtomicWeight
32.065(5)
Color
FFFF30
ElectronicConfiguration
[Ne] 3s2 3p4
ElectronegativityInPauling
2.58
AtomicRadiusInPM
102
IonRadiusInPM
184 (-2)
VanDerWaalsRadiusInPM
180
IEinKJmol
1000
EAinKJmol
-200
OxidationStates
-2, -1, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
StandardState
solid
BondingType
covalent network
MeltingPoint
388
BoilingPoint
718
Density
1.96
State
Polyatomic nonmetal
DiscoveredYear
Ancient