tantalum

[tan-tl-uhm]
noun Chemistry.
a gray, hard, rare, metallic element occurring in columbite and tantalite and usually associated with niobium: used, because of its resistance to corrosion by most acids, for chemical, dental, and surgical instruments and apparatus. Symbol: Ta; atomic weight: 180.948; atomic number: 73; specific gravity: 16.6.

Origin:
1795–1805; < Neo-Latin; named after Tantalus

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tantalum (ˈtæntələm)
 
n
a hard greyish-white metallic element that occurs with niobium in tantalite and columbite: used in electrical capacitors in most circuit boards and in alloys to increase hardness and chemical resistance, esp in surgical instruments. Symbol: Ta; atomic no: 73; atomic wt: 180.9479; valency: 2, 3, 4, or 5; relative density: 16.654; melting pt: 3020°C; boiling pt: 5458±100°C
 
[C19: named after Tantalus, with reference to the metal's incapacity to absorb acids]

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Medical Dictionary

tantalum tan·ta·lum (tān'tə-ləm)
n.
Symbol Ta
A hard heavy metallic element that is exceptionally resistant to chemical attack below 150°C and is used to make electronic components and surgical instruments. Atomic number 73; atomic weight 180.948; melting point 3,017°C; boiling point 5,458°C; specific gravity 16.7; valence 2, 3, 4, 5.

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Science Dictionary
tantalum   (tān'tə-ləm)  Pronunciation Key 
Symbol Ta
A hard, heavy, gray metallic element that is highly resistant to corrosion at low temperatures. It is used to make light-bulb filaments, surgical instruments, and glass for camera lenses. Atomic number 73; atomic weight 180.948; melting point 2,996°C; boiling point 5,425°C; specific gravity 16.6; valence 2, 3, 4, 5. See Periodic Table.
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Example sentences
Tantalum is a metal resistant to acid corrosion commonly used in chemical, dental, and surgical instruments.
Tantalum is a fairly new biomaterial designed with a high and bone-binding porosity.
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