Rhenium Facts (Re or Atomic Number 75)

Chemical & Physical Properties of Rhenium

Rhenium element facts

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Rhenium is a heavy, silvery-white transition metal. It has element symbol Re and atomic number 75. The element's properties were predicted by Mendeleev when he designed his periodic table. Here is a collection of rhenium element facts.

Rhenium Basic Facts

Symbol: Re

Atomic Number: 75

Atomic Weight: 186.207

Electron Configuration: [Xe] 4f14 5d5 6s2

Element Classification: Transition Metal

Discovery: Walter Noddack, Ida Tacke, Otto Berg 1925 (Germany)

Name Origin: Latin: Rhenus, the Rhine River.

Uses: Rhenium is used to make high-temperature superalloys that are used in jet engines (70% of rhenium production). The element is also used to prepare platinum-rhenium catalysts used to make high-octane unleaded gasoline. The radioactive isotopes rhenium-188 and rhenium-186 are used to treat liver cancer and may be applicable to pancreatic cancer.

Biological Role: Rhenium serves no known biological role. Because the elements and its compounds are used in small amounts, they have not been widely studied for toxicity. Two compounds studied in rats (rhenium trichloride and potassium perrhenate) displayed very low toxicity, comparable to that of table salt (sodium chloride).

Rhenium Physical Data

Density (g/cc): 21.02

Melting Point (K): 3453

Boiling Point (K): 5900

Appearance: dense, silvery-white metal

Atomic Radius (pm): 137

Atomic Volume (cc/mol): 8.85

Covalent Radius (pm): 128

Ionic Radius: 53 (+7e) 72 (+4e)

Specific Heat (@20°C J/g mol): 0.138

Fusion Heat (kJ/mol): 34

Evaporation Heat (kJ/mol): 704

Debye Temperature (K): 416.00

Pauling Negativity Number: 1.9

First Ionizing Energy (kJ/mol): 759.1

Oxidation States: 5, 4, 3, 2, -1

Lattice Structure: hexagonal

Lattice Constant (Å): 2.760

Lattice C/A Ratio: 1.615


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  • Greenwood, Norman N.; Earnshaw, Alan (1997). Chemistry of the Elements (2nd ed.). Butterworth-Heinemann. ISBN 978-0-08-037941-8.
  • Hammond, C. R. (2004). The Elements, in Handbook of Chemistry and Physics (81st ed.). CRC press. ISBN 978-0-8493-0485-9.
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  • Weast, Robert (1984). CRC, Handbook of Chemistry and Physics. Boca Raton, Florida: Chemical Rubber Company Publishing. pp. E110. ISBN 0-8493-0464-4.
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Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Rhenium Facts (Re or Atomic Number 75)." ThoughtCo, Aug. 28, 2020, thoughtco.com/rhenium-facts-606585. Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2020, August 28). Rhenium Facts (Re or Atomic Number 75). Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/rhenium-facts-606585 Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Rhenium Facts (Re or Atomic Number 75)." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/rhenium-facts-606585 (accessed January 24, 2021).