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Dysprosium Oxide

dysprosium oxide is a sesquioxide compound of dysprosium, a rare earth metal with high magnetic properties. It is used in ceramics, glass, phosphors, lasers and dysprosium halide lamps.

Typical Applications

Common applications of dysprosium oxide include: (i) as an additive in making optical materials; (ii) as a dopant in fluorescent and glass materials, (iii) as an antireflection coating in photoelectric devices; (iv) as a component in dielectric multilayer ceramic capacitors (MLCC); and (v) as a neutron absorber for nuclear reaction control rods. Besides, it is also used as an ingredient in various other electronic devices.

Safety and health risks

Dysprosium is a non-toxic element. However, it may pose an explosion hazard if mixed with air or when thin strips are present in powder form.

It is not flammable in its pure form, but it reacts with water to produce hydrogen gas that can be explosive if released into the air. Moreover, soluble dysprosium salts and chlorides are mildly toxic if consumed in large amounts.

Natural sources of dysprosium oxide are mainly monazite, bastnasite and xenotime minerals. These are mined and then processed to obtain the metal in its pure form.

Extraction of dysprosium oxide from sand involves magnetic separation and chemical separation processes such as solvent extraction or ion exchange. The resulting product can be refined further by distillation, electrolysis or crystallization.

Dysprosium is a member of the lanthanide or rare earth group and has the highest magnetic properties of all the elements in this category. It is often used as an additive in the production of high-performance magnets. It is also an important component in some catalysis processes, especially for reducing the formation of harmful compounds.

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