Phosphorus, P, is a non-metallic main group element belonging to
Group Vb of the
Phosphorus can exist in three allotropic forms.
- Atomic Number : 15
- Relative Atomic Mass : 31
- Melting Point : 41 degC
- Boiling Point : 280 degC
- Relative Density : 1.8 (White Phosphorus)
- Relative Density : 2.2 (Red Phosphorus)
Phosphorus was discovered, by Brandt in 1669AD.
Phosphorus is widely distributed in nature and is an
essential element for life. Its principal ore is apatite.
is normally a white waxy solid, which is colourless and translucent,
- burns spontaneously in air to form phosphorus pentoxide and
must be stored under water,
- on exposure to sunlight, changes to red phosphorus which is
not as dangerous as white phosphorus.
Phosphorus is used
- in steel alloys,
- in phosphor bronze, and
- in inorganic cleaning agents and water softeners.
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