What is CALCIUM? What does CALCIUM mean? CALCIUM meaning, definition & explanation

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What is CALCIUM? What does CALCIUM mean? CALCIUM meaning - CALCIUM pronunciation - CALCIUM definition - CALCIUM explanation - How to pronounce CALCIUM?

Source: Wikipedia.org article, adapted under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/ license.

Calcium is a chemical element with symbol Ca and atomic number 20. Calcium is a soft gray Group 2 alkaline earth metal, fifth-most-abundant element by mass in the Earth's crust. The ion Ca2+ is also the fifth-most-abundant dissolved ion in seawater by both molarity and mass, after sodium, chloride, magnesium, and sulfate. Free calcium metal is too reactive to occur in nature. Calcium is produced in supernova nucleosynthesis.

Calcium is essential for living organisms, particularly in cell physiology where movement of the calcium ion into and out of the cytoplasm functions as a signal for many cellular processes. As a major material used in mineralization of bone, teeth and shells, calcium is the most abundant metal by mass in many animals.

Calcium is reactive and relatively soft for a metal. Although harder than lead, it can be cut with a knife with difficulty. It is a silvery metallic element that can be extracted by electrolysis from a fused salt like calcium chloride. When exposed to the air, it rapidly forms a gray-white coating of calcium oxide and calcium nitride. In bulk form (typically as chips or "turnings"), the metal is somewhat difficult to ignite, more difficult even than magnesium chips; but, when lit, the metal burns in air with a brilliant high-intensity orange-red light. Calcium metal reacts with water, producing hydrogen gas at a moderate rate without generating much heat, making it useful for generating hydrogen. In powdered form, however, the reaction with water is extremely rapid, as the increased surface area of the powder accelerates the reaction. Part of the reason for the slowness of the calcium–water reaction is a partial passivation (chemically protective coating) of insoluble white calcium hydroxide; in acidic solutions, where this compound is more soluble, calcium reacts vigorously.

With a density of 1.54 g/cm3, calcium is the lightest of the alkaline earth metals; magnesium (specific gravity 1.74) and beryllium (1.84) are denser though lighter in atomic mass. From strontium onward, the alkali earth metals become denser with increasing atomic mass. Calcium has two allotropes.
earth crust, mineralization

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