Symbol Gd. A soft silvery metallic element belonging to the lanthanoids; a.n. 64; r.a.m. 157.25; r.d. 7.901 (20°C); m.p. 1313°C; b.p. 3266°C. It occurs in gadolinite, xenotime, monazite, and residues from uranium ores. There are seven stable natural isotopes and eleven artificial isotopes are known. Two of the natural isotopes, gadolinium–155 and gadolinium–157, are the best neutron absorbers of all the elements. The metal has found limited applications in nuclear technology and in ferromagnetic alloys (with cobalt, copper, iron, and cerium). Gadolinium compounds are used in electronic components. The element was discovered by Jean de Marignac (1817–94) in 1880.
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