The Toxic Element Cadmium

Interactive Periodic Table and Related Topics

An Introduction to the Element Cadmium

Discovered by Friedrich Stromeyer in 1817, Cadmium is well-known as one of the toxic elements on the periodic table. Although it is common in textbook problems, you most likely will not be using the actual metal in chemistry labs anytime soon. That is because of the significant dangers and potential health risks the metal poses. Cadmium is a transition metal, located in between the main group elements of the periodic table. For further information about transition metals, check out this article about transition metals.

Fun Facts About Cadmium

  • The majority of cadmium produced now is used in rechargeable nickel-cadmium batteries
  • In its purified form, Cadmium appears as a silvery white color with a blue tone
  • Cadmium can easily be cut with a knife
  • Cadmium is a highly toxic metal, prolonged direct exposure to the metal can have serious effects on human health.
  • There is a category of pigments made from cadmium, known as cadmium pigments which display a vibrant orangish red color
  • Unlike a majority of metals, cadmium is unique in that it doesn’t corrode
  • Cadmium compounds are usually insoluble in water, yet are generally soluble in acids

Cadmium on the Periodic Table

By Original: Hannibal Vector: Sushant savla – Own work based on: Cd-TableImage.png by Hannibal, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Cadmium is located on the right-most side of the transition metals, in Group 12 column and Period 5. The group that cadmium belongs to can also be called the zinc row as the top-most element is zinc. The electron configuration for Cadmium is [Kr] 4d105s2.

Applications of the element Cadmium

Cadmium and Renewable Energy

Cadmium is able to be utilized in several forms for renewable energy sources including in batteries and solar cells.

Properties of Cadmium

  • Atomic Symbol: Cd
  • Atomic Number: 48
  • Atomic Weight: 112.411
  • Melting Point: 594.219 K
  • Boiling Point: 1040 K
  • Solubility in Water: Insoluble
  • Density: 8.65 Mg/m3
  • Group: 12
  • Period: 5
  • Block: d
  • Electron Configuration: [Kr] 4d105s2