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Chemical Elements

Phosphorus

atomic number of phosphorus, phosphorus compounds, atomic weight, periodic table, organisms

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Phosphorus, symbol P, reactive nonmetallic element that is important to living organisms and has many industrial uses. The atomic number of phosphorus is 15, and its atomic weight is 30.974. Phosphorus is in group 15 (or Va) of the periodic table.

Phosphorus was discovered about 1669 by the German alchemist Hennig Brand in the course of experiments in which he attempted to prepare gold from silver. The element’s name was drawn from the Greek word phosphoros, “light bearing,” because many phosphorus compounds are phosphorescent: they store light and give it off later.



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atomic number of phosphorus, phosphorus compounds, atomic weight, periodic table, organisms, Va, element, silver, gold, group

 
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