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Science Innovation Centre · 066 · Dysprosium

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Dysprosium is a lustrous, very soft, silvery metal. It is stable in air at room temperature even if it is slowly oxidised by oxygen. It reacts with cold water and rapidly dissolves in acids. It forms several brightly coloured salts. Dysprosium’s characteristics can be strongly affected by the presence of impurities.

Dysprosium is used in nuclear reactors as a cermet, a composite material made of ceramic and sintered metal, to make laser materials, nuclear reactor control rods, as sources of infrared radiation for studying chemical reactions. Another use in the field of radioactivity is in dosimeters for monitoring exposure to ionizing radiation.