Palladium is a chemical element that is classified as a transition metal in a group of elements known as the platinum group metals. It is a silvery-white metal that is most commonly commercially sourced from nickel-copper deposits. It is considered to be rare and is usually found alloyed with gold and other platinum group metals. Palladium is represented on the periodic table with the chemical symbol Pd and has the atomic number of 46. If you want to know who discovered this element, keep reading to find out.
Who discovered palladium?
Palladium was discovered in 1803 by English chemist William Hyde Wollaston. He discovered palladium while conducting experiments on platinum ore with a highly corrosive mixture of acids called aqua regia. He had been throwing the left over solution away. However, one day he decided to study the solution and after adding mercury cyanide and following a number of purification processes he was left with a white metal. He named his discovery palladium after the newly discovered asteroid Pallas. He announced the discovery by offering small samples of the metal at a shop in London in 1803, but did not disclose that he had discovered of palladium until 1805.
Did you know?
Irish chemist Richard Chenevix was not convinced that palladium was a new element and was suspicious of the fact that no one had claimed the discovery. In 1803 he declared it was no more than a alloy of platinum and mercury and he claimed the discovery as fraudulent. This caused much controversy and eventually involved Joseph Banks, who was the president of the Royal Society. These men wanted to find the person who had discovered palladium.