[ stron-shee-uh m, -shuh m, -tee-uh m ]
/ ˈstrɒn ʃi əm, -ʃəm, -ti əm /

noun Chemistry.

a bivalent, metallic element whose compounds resemble those of calcium, found in nature only in the combined state, as in strontianite: used in fireworks, flares, and tracer bullets. Symbol: Sr; atomic weight: 87.62; atomic number: 38; specific gravity: 2.6.

Origin of strontium

First recorded in 1800–10; stront(ia) + -ium


stron·tic [stron-tik] /ˈstrɒn tɪk/, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for strontium

British Dictionary definitions for strontium

/ (ˈstrɒntɪəm) /


a soft silvery-white element of the alkaline earth group of metals, occurring chiefly in celestite and strontianite. Its compounds burn with a crimson flame and are used in fireworks. The radioisotope strontium-90, with a half-life of 28.1 years, is used in nuclear power sources and is a hazardous nuclear fall-out product. Symbol: Sr; atomic no: 38; atomic wt: 87.62; valency: 2; relative density: 2.54; melting pt: 769°C; boiling pt: 1384°C

Word Origin for strontium

C19: from New Latin, from strontian
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medical definitions for strontium

[ strŏnchē-əm, -tē-əm, -shəm ]

n. Symbol Sr

A soft, easily oxidized metallic element that ignites spontaneously in air when finely divided, used in pharmaceuticals and in radioisotope form for bone imaging. Atomic number 38.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for strontium

[ strŏnchē-əm, -tē-əm ]


A soft, silvery metallic element of the alkaline-earth group that occurs naturally only as a sulfate or carbonate. One of its isotopes is used in the radiometric dating of rocks. Because strontium salts burn with a red flame, they are used to make fireworks and signal flares. Atomic number 38; atomic weight 87.62; melting point 777°C; boiling point 1,382°C; specific gravity 2.54; valence 2. See Periodic Table.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.