Alkaline Earth Metals
Magnesium is the lightest of the metals that can be safely handled, being less than two thirds as dense as aluminium. Like the other alkaline earth metals, it is a reactive metal that slowly tarnishes in air. These cylinders have been lacquered to protect their finish and make an ideal companion piece to our incredibly heavy tungsten cylinders.
Magnesium is one of the lightest metals with a density 4.5 times less than iron or steel. It gradually tarnishes in air. This sparkling fresh sample of distilled magnesium, showing the element’s beautiful crystal structure, is protected under an atmosphere of inert argon inside a sealed quartz dome.
It is surprising how few scientists have ever seen the element calcium as the un-oxidised shiny metal. This exquisite sample of distilled calcium, clearly showing its crystal structure, is permanently sealed under inert argon in a quartz dome for long- term display.
Shiny distilled strontium metal like this will turn into a white powder within a few minutes of being exposed to oxygen in the air. This sample is protected under an inert argon atmosphere in a sealed inner ampoule. The crystal structure of the metal is attractively revealed.
The longest-lived isotope of the element radium has a half life of only 1,600 years, which means that it is highly radioactive. It was once used as an ingredient in luminous paint for watch hands and aircraft instrument dials.