Periodic Table > Manganese
 

Terminology


Allotropes
Some elements exist in several different structural forms, these are called allotropes.


For more information on Murray Robertson’s image see Uses and properties facts below.

 

Fact box terminology


Group
Elements appear in columns or ‘groups’ in the periodic table. Members of a group typically have similar properties and electron configurations in their outer shell.


Period
Elements are laid out into rows or ‘periods’ so that similar chemical behaviour is observed in columns.


Block
Elements are organised into blocks by the orbital type in which the outer electrons are found. These blocks are named for the characteristic spectra they produce: sharp, principal, diffuse, and fundamental.


Atomic Number
The number of protons in the nucleus.


Atomic Radius/non -bonded (Å)
based on Van der Waals forces (where several isotopes exist, a value is presented for the most prevalent isotope). These values were calculated using a multitude of methods including crystallographic data, gas kinetic collision cross sections, critical densities, liquid state properties, for more details please refer to the CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics.


Electron Configuration
The arrangements of electrons above the last (closed shell) noble gas.


Isotopes
Elements are defined by the number of protons in its centre (nucleus), whilst the number of neutrons present can vary. The variations in the number of neutrons will create elements of different mass which are known as isotopes.


Melting Point (oC)
The temperature at which the solid-liquid phase change occurs.


Melting Point (K)
The temperature at which the solid-liquid phase change occurs.


Melting Point (oF)
The temperature at which the solid-liquid phase change occurs.


Boiling Point (oC)
The temperature at which the liquid-gas phase change occurs.


Boiling Point (K)
The temperature at which the liquid-gas phase change occurs.


Boiling Point (oF)
The temperature at which the liquid-gas phase change occurs.


Sublimation
Elements that do not possess a liquid phase at atmospheric pressure (1 atm) are described as going through a sublimation process.


Density (kgm-3)
Density is the weight of a substance that would fill 1 m3 (at 298 K unless otherwise stated).


Relative Atomic Mass
The mass of an atom relative to that of Carbon-12. This is approximately the sum of the number of protons and neutrons in the nucleus. Where more than one isotope exists the value given is the abundance weighted average.


Key Isotopes (% abundance)
An element must by definition have a fixed number of protons in its nucleus, and as such has a fixed atomic number, however variants of an element can exist with differing numbers of neutrons, and hence a different atomic masses (e.g. 12C has 6 protons and 6 neutrons and 13C has 6 protons and 7 neutrons).


CAS number
The Chemical Abstracts Service registry number is a unique identifier of a particular chemical, designed to prevent confusion arising from different languages and naming systems (where several isotopes exist, a value is presented for the most prevalent isotope).

Fact box

 
Group Melting point 1246 oC, 2274.8 oF, 1519.15 K 
Period Boiling point 2061 oC, 3741.8 oF, 2334.15 K 
Block Density (kg m-3) 7473 
Atomic number 25  Relative atomic mass 54.938  
State at room temperature Solid  Key isotopes 55Mn 
Electron configuration [Ar] 3d54s2  CAS number 7439-96-5 
ChemSpider ID 22372 ChemSpider is a free chemical structure database
 

Uses and properties terminology


Image Explanation

Murray Robertson is the artist behind the images which make up Visual Elements. This is where the artist explains his interpretation of the element and the science behind the picture.


Natural Abundance

Where this element is most commonly found in nature.


Biological Roles

The elements role within the body of humans, animals and plants. Also functionality in medical advancements both today and years ago.


Appearance

The description of the element in its natural form.

Uses and properties

 
Image explanation

The image is of an antique electromagnet and a cow. The electromagnet is because manganese may have got its name from the Latin word for magnet. The cow reflects the importance of the element as a food supplement for grazing animals.

Appearance
A hard, brittle, silvery metal.
Uses

Manganese is too brittle to be of much use as a pure metal. It is mainly used in alloys, such as steel.

Steel contains about 1% manganese, to increase the strength and also improve workability and resistance to wear.

Manganese steel contains about 13% manganese. This is extremely strong and is used for railway tracks, safes, rifle barrels and prison bars.

Drinks cans are made of an alloy of aluminium with 1.5% manganese, to improve resistance to corrosion. With aluminium, antimony and copper it forms highly magnetic alloys.

Manganese(IV) oxide is used as a catalyst, a rubber additive and to decolourise glass that is coloured green by iron impurities. Manganese sulfate is used to make a fungicide. Manganese(II) oxide is a powerful oxidising agent and is used in quantitative analysis. It is also used to make fertilisers and ceramics.

Biological role
Manganese is an essential element in all known living organisms. Many types of enzymes contain manganese. For example, the enzyme responsible for converting water molecules to oxygen during photosynthesis contains four atoms of manganese. 

Some soils have low levels of manganese and so it is added to some fertilisers and given as a food supplement to grazing animals.

The average human body contains about 12 milligrams of manganese. We take in about 4 milligrams each day from such foods as nuts, bran, wholegrain cereals, tea and parsley. Without it, bones grow spongier and break more easily. It is also essential for utilisation of vitamin B1.
Natural abundance
Manganese is the fifth most abundant metal in the Earth’s crust. Its minerals are widely distributed, with pyrolusite (manganese dioxide) and rhodochrosite (manganese carbonate) being the most common.

The main mining areas for manganese are in China, Africa, Australia and Gabon. The metal is obtained by reducing the oxide with sodium, magnesium or aluminium, or by the electrolysis of manganese sulfate.

Manganese nodules have been found on the floor of the oceans. These nodules contain about 24% manganese, along with smaller amounts of many other elements.
 
Atomic data terminology

Atomic radius/non -bonded (Å)
Based on Van der Waals forces (where several isotopes exist, a value is presented for the most prevalent isotope). These values were calculated using a multitude of methods including crystallographic data, gas kinetic collision cross sections, critical densities, liquid state properties,for more details please refer to the CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics.


Electron affinity (kJ mol-1)
The energy released when an additional electron is attached to the neutral atom and a negative ion is formed (where several isotopes exist, a value is presented for the most prevalent isotope). *


Electronegativity (Pauling scale)
The degree to which an atom attracts electrons towards itself, expressed on a relative scale as a function bond dissociation energies, Ed in eV. χA - χB =(eV)-1/2sqrt(Ed(AB)-[Ed(AA)+Ed(BB)]/2), with χH set as 2.2 (where several isotopes exist, a value is presented for the most prevalent isotope).


1st Ionisation energy (kJ mol-1)
The minimum energy required to remove an electron from a neutral atom in its ground state (where several isotopes exist, a value is presented for the most prevalent isotope).


Covalent radius (Å)
The size of the atom within a covalent bond, given for typical oxidation number and coordination (where several isotopes exist, a value is presented for the most prevalent isotope). ***

Atomic data

 
Atomic radius, non-bonded (Å) 2.050 Covalent radius (Å) 1.29
Electron affinity (kJ mol-1) Not stable Electronegativity
(Pauling scale)
1.550
Ionisation energies
(kJ mol-1)
 
1st
717.273
2nd
1509.029
3rd
3248.466
4th
4940.045
5th
6985.533
6th
9223.991
7th
11501.332
8th
18766.383
 

Mining/Sourcing Information

Data for this section of the data page has been provided by the British Geological Survey. To review the full report please click here or please look at their website here.


Key for numbers generated


Governance indicators

1 (low) = 0 to 2

2 (medium-low) = 3 to 4

3 (medium) = 5 to 6

4 (medium-high) = 7 to 8

5 (high) = 9


Reserve base distribution

1 (low) = 0 to 30 %

2 (medium-low) = 30 to 45 %

3 (medium) = 45 to 60 %

4 (medium-high) = 60 to 75 %

5 (high) = 75 %

(Where data are unavailable an arbitrary score of 2 was allocated. For example, Be, As, Na, S, In, Cl, Ca and Ge are allocated a score of 2 since reserve base information is unavailable. Reserve base data are also unavailable for coal; however, reserve data for 2008 are available from the Energy Information Administration (EIA).)


Production Concentration

1 (low) = 0 to 30 %

2 (medium-low) = 30 to 45 %

3 (medium) = 45 to 60 %

4 (medium-high) = 60 to 75 %

5 (high) = 75 %


Crustal Abundance

1 (low) = 100 to 1000 ppm

2 (medium-low) =10 to 100 ppm

3 (medium) = 1 to 10 ppm

4 (medium-high) = 0.1 to 1 ppm

5 (high) = 0.1 ppm

(Where data are unavailable an arbitrary score of 2 was allocated. For example, He is allocated a score of 2 since crustal abundance data is unavailable.)


Explanations for terminology


Crustal Abundance (ppm)

The abundance of an element in the Earth's crust in parts-per-million (ppm) i.e. The number of atoms of this element per 1 million atoms of crust.


Sourced

The country with the largest reserve base.


Reserve Base Distribution

This is a measure of the spread of future supplies, recording the percentage of a known resource likely to be available in the intermediate future (reserve base) located in the top three countries.


Production Concentrations

This reports the percentage of an element produced in the top three countries. The higher the value, the larger risk there is to supply.


Total Governance Factor

The World Bank produces a global percentile rank of political stability. The scoring system is given below, and the values for all three production countries were summed.


Relative Supply Risk Index

The Crustal Abundance, Reserve Base Distribution, Production Concentration and Governance Factor scores are summed and then divided by 2, to provide an overall Relative Supply Risk Index.

Supply risk

 
Scarcity factor 5.5
Country with largest reserve base South Africa
Crustal abundance (ppm) 774
Leading producer China
Reserve base distribution (%) 76.90
Production concentration (%) 35.90
Total governance factor(production) 6
Top 3 countries (mined)
  • 1) South Africa
  • 2) Ukraine
  • 3) Australia
Top 3 countries (production)
  • 1) China
  • 2) South Africa
  • 3) Australia
 

Oxidation states and isotopes


Key for Isotopes


Half Life
  y years
  d days
  h hours
  m minutes
  s seconds
Mode of decay
  α alpha particle emission
  β negative beta (electron) emission
  β+ positron emission
  EC orbital electron capture
  sf spontaneous fission
  ββ double beta emission
  ECEC double orbital electron capture

Terminology


Common Oxidation states
The oxidation state of an atom is a measure of the degree of oxidation of an atom. It is defined as being the charge that an atom would have if all bonds were ionic. Free atoms have an oxidation state of 0, and the sum of oxidation numbers within a substance must equal the overall charge.


Important Oxidation states
The most common oxidation states of an element in its compounds.


Isotopes
Elements are defined by the number of protons in its centre (nucleus), whilst the number of neutrons present can vary. The variations in the number of neutrons will create elements of different mass which are known as isotopes.

Oxidation states and isotopes

 
Common oxidation states 7, 6, 4, 3, 2, 0, -1
Isotopes Isotope Atomic mass Natural abundance (%) Half life Mode of decay
  55Mn 54.938 100
 

Pressure and temperature - advanced terminology


Molar Heat Capacity (J mol-1 K-1)

Molar heat capacity is the energy required to heat a mole of a substance by 1 K.


Young's modulus (GPa)

Young's modulus is a measure of the stiffness of a substance, that is, it provides a measure of how difficult it is to extend a material, with a value given by the ratio of tensile strength to tensile strain.


Shear modulus (GPa)

The shear modulus of a material is a measure of how difficult it is to deform a material, and is given by the ratio of the shear stress to the shear strain.


Bulk modulus (GPa)

The bulk modulus is a measure of how difficult to compress a substance. Given by the ratio of the pressure on a body to the fractional decrease in volume.


Vapour Pressure (Pa)

Vapour pressure is the measure of the propensity of a substance to evaporate. It is defined as the equilibrium pressure exerted by the gas produced above a substance in a closed system.

Pressure and temperature data – advanced

 
Molar heat capacity
(J mol-1 K-1)
26.32 Young's modulus (GPa) Unknown
Shear modulus (GPa) Unknown Bulk modulus (GPa) 118
Vapour pressure  
Temperature (K)
400 600 800 1000 1200 1400 1600 1800 2000 2200 2400
Pressure (Pa)
- - 5.55
x 10-7
2.21
x 10-3
0.52 24.9 - - - - -
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History

Manganese in the form of the black ore pyrolucite (manganese dioxide, MnO2) was used by the pre-historic cave painters of the Lascaux region of France around 30,000 years ago. In more recent times was used by glass makers to remove the pale greenish tint of natural glass.


In 1740, the Berlin glass technologist Johann Heinrich Pott investigated it chemically and showed that it contained no iron as has been assumed. From it he was able to make potassium permanganate (KMnO4), one of the strongest oxidising agents known. Several chemists in the 1700s tried unsuccessfully to isolate the metal component in pyrolusite. The first person to do this was the Swedish chemist and mineralogist Johan Gottlieb Gahn in 1774. However, a student at Vienna, Ignatius Kaim, had already described how he had produced manganese metal, in his dissertation written in 1771.

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Podcasts

Listen to Manganese Podcast
Transcript :

Chemistry in Its Element - Manganese


(Promo)

 

You're listening to Chemistry in its element brought to you by Chemistry World, the magazine of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

 

(End promo)

 

Chris Smith

Hello! This week to the element that lies at the root of plant photosynthesis, fights free radicals, strengthens steel, makes mysterious ocean floor nodules and even goes to mix up with magnesium. Here's Ron Caspi.

 

Ron Caspi

I always feel that Manganese is sadly overlooked. It's the fifth most abundant metal in the Earth crust and the second most abundant transition metal after iron, but say, Manganese and many people will think of the much more familiar magnesium. There is a good reason why the names of these two elements are so confusingly similar, but we'll get to that in a minute. There are more than 300 different minerals that contain Manganese. Large terrestrial deposits are found in Australia, Gabon, South Africa, Brazil and Russia.   Yet more fascinating are the mysterious three trillion tons of Manganese nodules that cover great parts of the ocean floor. These nodules are never covered by the constantly accumulating sediment. They manage to always stay above the sediment, due to the constant pushing and turning by their keepers, the small animals that live on the ocean floor. Almost half a billion dollars were invested in developing mining techniques for the nodules, but they're found so deep, mostly at depth of 4 to 6 kilometres, that the mining is still not commercially viable. 

 

Manganese is an extremely versatile element. It can exist in six different oxidation states. In nature, it is usually found in either its reduced +2 state, which easily dissolves in water or in the +4 state, which forms many types of insoluble oxides. The +3 form of Manganese is used as a powerful weapon, by dry rot fungi that break down wood. Wood contains a lot of lignin, a polymer that is almost indestructible by biological systems; indestructible that is unless you use Manganese. A fungal enzyme, Manganese peroxidase, oxidizes Manganese +2 atoms to Manganese +3, which are then sent to the tiny spaces within the wood lattice. Manganese +3 is highly reactive and can break down the chemical bonds of lignin, making it available as food for the fungus. Fungi are not the only organisms that harness the power of Manganese chemistry. Manganese is an essential element for all life forms. It is absolutely necessary for the activity of several enzymes that must bind a Manganese atom before they can function, including superoxide dismutase, an enzyme that protects us from the harmful effects of toxic oxygen radicals. 

 

One of the most important reactions in biology, photosynthesis, is completely dependent on Manganese. It is the star player in the reaction centre of photosystem II where water molecules are converted to oxygen. Without Manganese, there would be no photosynthesis as we know it and there would be no oxygen in the atmosphere. While biology discovered Manganese early on, it took humankind a bit longer. Already in ancient Egypt, glass blowers who got tired of their greenish glass founded by adding small amounts of certain minerals to the mix, they could make perfectly clear glass. They didn't realize it at that time, but these minerals, which were affectionately named, Sapo vitri or glass soap were Manganese oxides. Excellent ores were found in the region of Magnesia, the region of northern Greece, just south of Macedonia, and this is how the trouble with Manganese names started. Different ores from the region, which included both Magnesium and Manganese, were simply called Magnesia. In the 1600s, the term Magnesia Alba or White Magnesia was adopted for Magnesium minerals, while Magnesia Nigra or Black Magnesia was used for the darker Manganese oxides. By the way, the famous magnetic minerals that were discovered in that region were named Lapis magnis or stone of Magnesia, which eventually became today's magnet. For a while, there was a total mix up concerning Manganese and Magnesium, but in the late 18th Century, a group of Swedish chemists, headed by Torbern Bergman were convinced that Manganese is its own element. In 1774, Scheele, a member of the group presented these conclusions to the Stockholm Academy and later that year, Johann Gahn, another member became the first man to purify Manganese and prove that it is an element. It took a few more years, but by 1807, the name Manganese was accepted by all. 

 

Today, Manganese is used for countless industrial purposes. By far, the most important one is in steel making. When Sir Henry Bessemer invented the process of steel making in 1856, his steel broke up when hot rolled or forged; the problem was solved later that year, when Robert Foster Mushet, another Englishman, discovered that adding small amounts of Manganese to the molten Iron solves the problem. Since Manganese has a greater affinity for Sulphur than does Iron, it converts the low-melting Iron Sulphide in steel to high-melting Manganese Sulphide. Since then, all steel contains Manganese. In fact, about 90% of all Manganese produced today, is used in steel. 

 

From the mysterious nodules at the bottom of the ocean to the decay of wood, from ancient glassblowing to modern steel-making, from fighting oxygen radicals to photosynthesis, Manganese has always played a fascinating role in the chemistry, geology, and biology of our planet, a role that is seriously under appreciated.

 

Chris Smith

Ron Caspi. Next time, to a cheeky chemical with some practical and also some less than practical uses that is unless you're a practical joker.

 

Andrea Sella

Alloys containing bismuth were used for safety valves and boilers, melting if the temperature rose too high and a classic prank invented in Victorian times was to cast spoons from an alloy consisting of 8 parts Bismuth, 5 parts lead and 3 parts tin. Its melting point is low enough for the spoon to vanish into a cup of hot tea to the astonishment of the unsuspected visitor.

 

Chris Smith

Andrea Sella, who'll be revealing the story of bismuth on next week's Chemistry in its element. I hope you can join us. I am Chris Smith, thank you for listening and goodbye!

 

(Promo)

 

Chemistry in its elementis brought to you by the Royal Society of Chemistry and produced by thenakedscientists dot com. There's more information and other episodes of Chemistry in its element on our web site at chemistryworld dot org forward slash elements.

 

(End promo)

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References

 
Images:  Visual Elements © Murray Robertson 2011
Mining and Sourcing data:  British Geological Survey – natural environment research council.
Text:  John Emsley Nature’s Building Blocks: An A-Z Guide to the Elements, Oxford University Press, 2nd Edition, 2011.
Additional information for platinum, gold, neodymium and dysprosium obtained from Material Value Consultancy Ltd www.matvalue.com
Data: CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics, CRC Press, 92nd Edition, 2011.
G. W. C. Kaye and T. H. Laby Tables of Physical and Chemical Constants, Longman, 16th Edition, 1995.
Members of the RSC can access these books through our library.