Q:

Where does magnesium come from?

A:

Quick Answer

Magnesium is found in mineral deposits such as dolomite and magnesite, and it is an abundant element in the earth’s crust. It does not occur naturally as a pure metal.

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Full Answer

Joseph Black discovered this silvery-white metal in 1755. However, Sir Humphrey Davy was the first to isolate this element through the process of electrolysis.

The chemical symbol for magnesium is Mg, and it has an atomic number of 12. Its melting point is 650 degrees Celsius, and its boiling point is 1,090 degrees Celsius.

Magnesium has various uses, including in photography, fireworks, incendiary bombs and flares. Magnesium also has medical applications. For example, as milk of magnesia, it is useful as an antacid for stomach upsets.

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    What are the uses of magnesium nitrate?

    A:

    One of the major uses of magnesium nitrate is in pyrotechnics. This compound is known as a form of hygroscopic salt.

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  • Q:

    What is magnesium sulfate used for?

    A:

    Magnesium sulfate is used to treat pre-eclampsia, headaches and constipation. It can also reduce boils, abscesses and inflammation. More commonly known as Epsom salts, magnesium sulfate can be dissolved in water for soaks or combined with other ingredients and taken orally or intravenously.

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  • Q:

    How hot does magnesium burn?

    A:

    Magnesium ignites at 632 degrees Celsius and burns at 1982 C. This is equivalent to igniting at 1169 degrees Fahrenheit and burning at 3599 F.

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  • Q:

    How does magnesium react with oxygen?

    A:

    Magnesium has a very energetic combustion reaction with oxygen, where two atoms of magnesium bond with one molecule of oxygen gas to form two molecules of magnesium oxide. This reaction is extremely exothermic, releasing a great deal of heat and light, which is why magnesium fuses are used to initiate reactions such as the thermite reaction, and magnesium is used in flares for high visibility. The reaction of magnesium to oxygen is so energetically favorable that burning magnesium can steal the oxygen from both water and carbon dioxide, making these common methods of dousing flames ineffective to stop magnesium combustion.

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