Nickel is found as a constituent in most meteorites and often serves as one of the criteria for distinguishing a meteorite from other minerals. Iron meteorites, or siderites, may contain iron alloyed with from 5 to nearly 20% nickel. The USA 5-cent coin (whose nickname is "nickel") contains just 25% nickel.
Nickel is a silvery white metal that takes on a high polish. It is hard, malleable, ductile, somewhat ferromagnetic, and a fair conductor of heat and electricity.
Nickel carbonyl, [Ni(CO)4], is an extremely toxic gas and exposure should not exceed 0.007 mg M-3.
Discoveror: Axel Fredrik Cronstedt
Date discovered: 1751
Discovered at: Sweden
Meaning of name: From the German word "kupfernickel" meaning Devil's copper or St Nicholas's (OLd Nick's) copper
Standard state: solid at 298 K
Colour: lustrous, metallic, silvery tinge
Density of solid at ambient temperature/kg m-3: 8908
Molar volume/cm3: 6.59
Covalent (single bond):
Pauling radius for the ion [Ni]-: no data
Valence shell orbital radius maxima (Rmax)
|radius||127.6||no data||33.8||no data|
Both values are quoted on the Pauling scale.
Allred Rochow: 1.75
structure: ccp (cubic close-packed)
The following CrystalMaker image represents the solid state structure. For most elements, the most stable allotrope is illustrated. Try WebElements version 2 for interactive virtual reality and CHIME images.
melting point: 1728
boiling point: 3186
Enthalpies /kJ mol-1
single bond enthalpies:
Ionization enthalpies /kJ mol-1
This section gives some data for naturally occurring isotopes.
||% natural abundance
|58Ni||57.9353462 (16)||68.077 (9)|
|60Ni||59.9307884 (16)||26.223 (8)|
|61Ni||60.9310579 (16)||1.140 (1)|
|62Ni||61.9283461 (16)||3.634 (2)|
|64Ni||63.9279679 (17)||0.926 (2)|