DISCOVERY DISCOVERED IN 1807 BY SIR HUMPHRY DAVY DERIVED FROM CAUSTIC POTASH FIRST METAL ISOLATED BY ELECTROLYSIS
Davy’s best work was with the electric battery. He found, that when we put two metals in an acid or another solution that will dissolve one metal faster than the other, and connect the metals with a wire, an electric current is produced. Through the means of his electric battery, Davy discovered Potassium: which is found in common potash and saltpetre; and when separated, is a very soft metal.
CHARACTERISTICS Soft, low-melting solid (can be easily cut with a knife) Freshly cut potassium is silvery in appearance, but in air begins to tarnish to gray immediately Alkali metal Reacts violently with water, producing hydrogen Emits violet color in a flame Water solubility Dilute solutions of potassium ion taste sweet Higher concentrations taste bitter/ salty Can be isolated through electrolysis of its hydroxide
SOURCE Makes up 2.4% of weight of earth’s crust Potash is its principal source- mined in Saskatchewan, California, New Mexico, Germany and Utah The oceans are another source of potassium Also in may foods and beverages, such as: bananas artichoke milk cereals
USES OF POTASSIUM Nutrition Lack of Potassium leads to: *weakness *cramping *fatigue *nausea *drowsiness *anxiety *irregular heartbeat *dry skin *thirst *chills Helps fight anemia Potassium Chloride and Potassium Sulfate are used in fertilizers Potassium Chlorate is used to make a variety of products. It is used as an oxidizing agent as well as to make fireworks and explosives Potassium Nitrate is also used to make fireworks, as well as black powder (the main component in gun powder) Potassium Bromide is used as a sedative and also has photographic uses. Potassium Iodide is used to make medicine, and it is used to make iodized salt. Potassium Permanganate is used as an oxidizing agent *Make sure to always get your potassium*