Meaning of TANTALUM in English


ˈtant ə ləm noun

( -s )

Etymology: New Latin, from Tantalus, mythical king condemned to stand up to his chin in water that receded whenever he stooped to drink; from its incapacity to absorb acid

: a lustrous platinum-gray hard ductile metallic element that has a very high melting point, that is chiefly pentavalent and is resistant to attack by most chemicals except hydrofluoric acid, that occurs combined in tantalite, columbite, and other rare minerals almost always associated with niobium, that is extracted usually by the formation and reduction of a complex potassium tantalum fluoride, and that is used chiefly in making corrosion-resistant chemical apparatus and processing equipment, in electrolytic capacitors and rectifiers, in surgery as suture wire and bone-repair plates, and in alloys — symbol Ta ; see element table

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.