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What the name means: When the Spanish conquistadors moved through South America they sent samples of an unknown metal back to Spain. This metal was being used in jewelry by the native peoples. In 1748, Spaniard, Antonio de Ulloa named the metal platina, meaning "like silver".
Who identified platinum?: Platinum had been used by the native peoples of South America long before the Spanish arrived. In 1750, William Brownrigg isolated a reasonably pure form of the metal.
In 1800, William Hyde Wollaston and Smithson Tennant decided to investigate a way of purifying platinum metal to exploit its commercial value. During the process they obtained a black residue that, at first, they discarded. Eventually this waste allowed them to identify four new elements!
STP = standard temperature and pressure.
About platinum: Platinum is a very rare metal which is why it is used in expensive jewelry and commemoration objects, such as platinum discs awarded to record-breaking recording artists. It is a silvery-looking metal that is extremely resistant to corrosion.
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