Logo for Penrhos College
Events Toggle Search box

Science Innovation Centre · 084 · Polonium

This element is still available. Select an option below to secure it.


Click here to secure it now
Proceed to the donation page for this element.
Click here to pledge in instalments
Gifts may be pledged over a period of two to five years and made in as many split-payments.


Polonium is a radioactive, extremely rare semi-metal. It is reactive, silvery-grey, it dissolves in dilute acids, but it is only slightly soluble in alkalis. It is fairly volatile: about half of a sample of it will evaporate within 3 days (unless it is kept in a sealed container).

Polonium was once used in textile mills (to eliminate static charges) and by the manufacturers of photographic plates (in brushes to remove the accumulated dust). It is used as a source of alpha-radiation for research and, alloyed with beryllium it can act as a portable source of neutrons, which normally only access to a nuclear reactor can provide.