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platinum group

six metals, in order of increasing atomic weight, ruthenium (Ru), rhodium (Rh), palladium (Pd), osmium (Os), iridium (Ir), and platinum (Pt). The elements all possess a silvery white colour-except osmium, which is bluish white. The chemical behaviour of these metals is paradoxical in that they are highly resistant to attack by most chemical reagents yet, employed as catalysts, readily accelerate or control the rate of many oxidation, reduction, and hydrogenation reactions.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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