Periodic Table: Scientists, Chemists, Professors and Students of Chemistry often use the periodic table of elements to inquire for chemical elements. Dimitri Mendeleev is known as Father of the periodic table and he developed the first form of the Periodic Table. This periodic table was mainly stated on the basis of atomic mass of the elements.
During his lifetime only 50% of the elements were discovered, and not all of the data about elements was totally understood or available at that time. The Current Periodic Table is developed on the basis of Henry Moseley’s modern periodic law (Henry Moseley was a British physicist). According to the periodic law, the characteristics of Elements are periodic functions of the atomic numbers of significant elements. The Periodic Table consists of total 118 Elements.)
Main Characteristics of the Periodic Table:
- The arrangement of all the elements is done in the order of increasing atomic number.
- A unique symbol is given to each element and it makes the element’s identification simplified as some names of the elements are very complex and difficult to remember.
- Elements of the Periodic table are vertically and horizontally arranged. The elements which are arranged vertically in Columns are known as Groups and the elements which are arranged horizontally in rows are known as Periods.
- Later elements are gathered as per periodic trends and characteristics. Example: Elements in group 1A are soft metals that vigorously react when mixed with water.
What is the symbol of an Element?
A symbol of an Element is a ‘sign’ or ‘notation’ that basically contains one or two letters. Some exceptional symbols have three letters, they normally represent synthesized (or man made) elements newly, with some temporary names like that.
Symbols and how they are invented?
One can question ‘How is the symbol of an element invented?’ It can be seen very easily that most symbols are basically derived from the elements’ names by taking either initial or initial two letters from the English name of the elements.
Some of these symbols of very less elements are taken from their Latin or Greek names. Here are some of the examples:
Aurum is the Latin name for Gold. Hence the symbol for gold is ‘Au’.
The symbol ‘Fe’ is used to identify Iron, and it is taken from Latin word for Iron which is “Ferrum”.
Rules or Protocols followed to identify the Element using Symbol
The first letter of a symbol is the capital letter and the second (or third) letters are in small letters. Example: ‘Ca’ stands for Calcium; ‘He’ stands Helium, etc. When the symbol represents an element by single letter only, it is always written in uppercase.