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metallic element, named 1886 by J.C. Marginac in honor of Johan Gadolin (1760–1852), Finnish minerologist and chemist, who in 1794 first began investigation of the earth which eventually yielded the element and several others.
gadolinium gad·o·lin·i·um (gād'l-ĭn'ē-əm)
A malleable, ductile metallic rare-earth element. Atomic number 64; atomic weight 157.25; melting point 1,314°C; boiling point 3,264°C; specific gravity 7.8; valence 3.
A silvery-white, malleable, ductile metallic element of the lanthanide series that has seven natural isotopes and 11 artificial isotopes. Two of the natural isotopes, Gd 155 and Gd 157, are the best known neutron absorbers. Gadolinium is used to improve the heat and corrosion resistance of iron, chromium, and various alloys and in medicine as a contrast medium for magnetic resonance imaging and as a radioisotope in bone mineral analysis. Atomic number 64; atomic weight 157.25; melting point 1,312°C; boiling point approximately 3,000°C; specific gravity from 7.8 to 7.896; valence 3. See Periodic Table.