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View Diary: How Regulation came to be:  Radium Girls - Part II (46 comments)

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  •  Thanks for the information! (4+ / 0-)
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    Hard to Port, lineatus, Pariah Dog, pixxer

    One of the references I read said it "acted" like calcium, but didn't say (or I didn't pick up) that it was replacing it.  Thanks for the explanation.

    People with advantages are loath to believe that they just happen to be people with advantages. --C. Wright Mills

    by dsteffen on Sun Mar 08, 2009 at 02:42:56 PM PDT

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    •  Probably means that the bone-building cells (2+ / 0-)
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      dsteffen, Pariah Dog

      in the body can't distinguish Radium from Calcium, and so will include Radium in bone structure if they happen upon it.

      The law in its infinite majesty forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets and to steal bread.
      - Anatole France

      by pixxer on Sun Mar 08, 2009 at 09:29:18 PM PDT

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      •  Exactly (3+ / 0-)
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        dsteffen, Pariah Dog, pixxer

        Calcium is element 20 on the periodic table, while radium is element 88, three rows straight down (go here to see what I mean). This means they both have two free electrons that can be shared with other elements to form compounds. The fact radium is three rows down means the atom (or ion, once it's sharing the electrons) is significantly larger (on an atomic scale), and needs bigger molecular intersticies to fit in a crystaline structure. Those will be most available in the larger bones, hence the settling in the jaw and leg bones.

        Radarlady, who learned in high school that chemistry explains much we know about the macro universe rather easily...

        •  Thanks for the interesting bit (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          radarlady, dsteffen

          about the size of the atom leading to its use in bones with larger interstices. Most fascinating! I teach in the sort of building that has periodic tables here and there, but bone structure is something I have managed to know nothing about. Much appreciated!

          The law in its infinite majesty forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets and to steal bread.
          - Anatole France

          by pixxer on Mon Mar 09, 2009 at 02:09:36 PM PDT

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        •  Do you mean to say... (1+ / 0-)
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          radarlady

          ...that guy standing up in front of my high school chem class going "blahblahblahblahblah" was actually trying to tell me something important and potentially useful?  Who knew?

          People with advantages are loath to believe that they just happen to be people with advantages. --C. Wright Mills

          by dsteffen on Mon Mar 09, 2009 at 03:46:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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