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[gad-l-in-ee-uh m] /ˌgæd lˈɪn i əm/
noun, Chemistry
a rare-earth metallic element. Symbol: Gd; atomic weight: 157.25; atomic number: 64.
1885-90; see gadolinite, -ium
Related forms
gadolinic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for gadolinium


a ductile malleable silvery-white ferromagnetic element of the lanthanide series of metals: occurs principally in monazite and bastnaesite. Symbol: Gd; atomic no: 64; atomic wt: 157.25; valency: 3; relative density: 7.901; melting pt: 1313±°C; boiling pt: 3273°C (approx.)
Derived Forms
gadolinic, adjective
Word Origin
C19: New Latin, from gadolinite
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for gadolinium

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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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gadolinium in Medicine

gadolinium gad·o·lin·i·um (gād'l-ĭn'ē-əm)
Symbol Gd
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.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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gadolinium in Science
Symbol Gd
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.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for gadolinium


(Gd), chemical element, rare-earth metal of the lanthanoid series of the periodic table. Silvery white and moderately ductile, the metal reacts slowly with oxygen and water. Below 17 C it is ferromagnetic and at very low temperatures, superconducting. Credit for the discovery of gadolinium is shared by J.-C.-G. de Marignac and P.-E. Lecoq de Boisbaudran. Marignac separated (1880) a new rare earth (metallic oxide) from the mineral samarskite; Lecoq de Boisbaudran obtained (1886) a fairly pure sample of the same earth, which with Marignac's assent he named gadolinia, after a mineral in which it occurs that in turn had been named for the Finnish chemist Johan Gadolin. Gadolinium occurs in many minerals along with the other rare earths but is obtained primarily from monazite. It is found also in the products of nuclear fission. Commercial separation depends upon ion-exchange techniques. The metal has been produced by thermoreduction of the anhydrous chloride or fluoride by calcium.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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