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A soft, malleable metallic element. Neodymium is a rare-earth element that occurs in the minerals monazite, bastnaesite, cerite and gadolinite. It was discovered by Carl von Welsback in 1885 in Austria. Pure neodymium is a grayish white metal that turns yellowish with exposure to air. The oxide is a pale blue powder that is soluble in water. Neodymium and its oxide are used as a glass colorants for sunglasses and art objects. Neodymium imparts a dichroic property to glass that makes is useful as a filter plate on color television tubes to improve image contrast. Other salts of neodymium have rose and violet colors.

Synonyms and Related Terms

Nd; néodyme (Fr.); Neodym (Deut., Sven.); neodimio (It., Esp.); Neodímio (Port.)


  • Irritant to eyes and skin.
  • Fisher Scientific: MSDS

Physical and Chemical Properties

Reacts slowly with water. Soluble in dilute acids. Sensitive to air and moisture.

Composition Nd (atomic no. 60)
CAS 7440-00-8
Melting Point 1021 C
Density 7.003 g/ml
Molecular Weight atomic wt = 144.27
Boiling Point 3074 C

Resources and Citations

  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Van Nostrand's Scientific Encyclopedia, Douglas M. Considine (ed.), Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 1976.
  • Random House, Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
  • The Merck Index, Martha Windholz (ed.), Merck Research Labs, Rahway NJ, 10th edition, 1983 Comment: entry 6538
  • The American Heritage Dictionary or Encarta, via Microsoft Bookshelf 98, Microsoft Corp., 1998