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Application Notes

Tantalum • Transition Metal

Primary XPS region: Ta4f
Overlapping regions: O2s
Binding energies of common chemical states:

Chemical state Binding energy Ta4f7/2/eV
Ta metal 21.8
TaN 23.0
Ta2O5 26.2

Experimental Information


Interpretation of XPS spectra

General comments

crystal structureAbout This Element

Symbol: Ta
Date of Discovery: 1802
Name Origin: King Tantalus (Greek mythology)
Appearance: gray-blue
Discoverer: Anders Ekeberg
Obtained From: columbite-tantalite

Melting Point: 3290 K
Boiling Point: 5731 K
Density[kg/m3]: 16650
Molar Volume: 10.85 × 10-6 m3/mol
Protons/Electrons: 73
Neutrons: 108
Shell Structure: 2,8,18,32,11,2
Electron Configuration: [Xe]4f145d36s2
Oxidation State: 5,4,3
Crystal Structure: cubic

This high-melting point transition metal was separated from niobium in 1802 by A. Ekeberg. When pure, tantalum can be drawn into a fine wire for use as a filament for evaporating metals. Due to its high melting point, ductility, and corrosion resistance, tantalum is often incorporated into a variety of metal alloys for use in chemical process equipment, capacitors and aircraft parts. The metal alloy tantalum carbide graphite is one of the hardest metals known, with a melting point of 3738 °C. Tantalum is a non-irritating metal and is immune to body liquids, making it well-suited for use in surgical application.

Application Notes

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