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zirconium

[ zur-koh-nee-uhm ]
/ zɜrˈkoʊ ni əm /
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noun Chemistry.
a metallic element found combined in zircon, baddeleyite, etc., resembling titanium chemically: used in steel metallurgy, as a scavenger, as a refractory, and as an opacifier in vitreous enamels. Symbol: Zr; atomic weight: 91.22; atomic number:40;specific gravity: 6.49 at 20°C.
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Origin of zirconium

From New Latin, dating back to 1800–10; see origin at zircon, -ium

OTHER WORDS FROM zirconium

zir·con·ic [zur-kon-ik], /zɜrˈkɒn ɪk/, adjective

Words nearby zirconium

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use zirconium in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for zirconium

zirconium
/ (zɜːˈkəʊnɪəm) /

noun
a greyish-white metallic element, occurring chiefly in zircon, that is exceptionally corrosion-resistant and has low neutron absorption. It is used as a coating in nuclear and chemical plants, as a deoxidizer in steel, and alloyed with niobium in superconductive magnets. Symbol: Zr; atomic no: 40; atomic wt: 91.224; valency: 2, 3, or 4; relative density: 6.506; melting pt: 1855±2°C; boiling pt: 4409°C

Derived forms of zirconium

zirconic (zɜːˈkɒnɪk), adjective

Word Origin for zirconium

C19: from New Latin; see zircon
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

Scientific definitions for zirconium

zirconium
[ zûr-kōnē-əm ]

Zr
A shiny, grayish-white metallic element that occurs primarily in zircon. It is used to build nuclear reactors because of its ability to withstand bombardment by neutrons even at high temperatures. Zirconium is also highly resistant to corrosion, making it a useful component of pumps, valves, and alloys. Atomic number 40; atomic weight 91.22; melting point 1,852°C; boiling point 4,377°C; specific gravity 6.56 (20°C); valence 2, 3, 4. See Periodic Table.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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