What is promethium?

  • (noun): A soft silvery metallic element of the rare earth group having no stable isotope; was discovered in radioactive form as a fission product of uranium.
    Synonyms: Pm, atomic number 61


Promethium, originally prometheum, is a chemical element with the symbol Pm and atomic number 61. All of its isotopes are radioactive; it is one of only two such elements that are followed in the periodic table by elements with stable forms, a distinction shared with technetium. Chemically, promethium is a lanthanide, which forms salts when combined with other elements. Promethium shows only one stable oxidation state of +3; however, a few +2 compounds may exist.

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Promethium - Precautions
... Promethium-147 can emit X-rays during its beta decay, which are dangerous for all lifeforms ... Interactions with tiny quantities of promethium-147 are not hazardous if certain precautions are observed ... It is not known what human organs are affected by interaction with promethium a possible candidate is the bone tissues ...