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Bismuth Crystals

Nothing to do with Meteorites or Space but just amazing beautiful man made crystals of Bismuth :-)
Bismuth is a brittle, crystalline, white metal with a slight pink tinge. It has a variety of uses, including cosmetics, alloys, fire extinguishers and ammunition. It is probably best known as the main ingredient in stomach ache remedies such as Pepto-Bismol.

Bismuth, element 83 on the periodic table of elements, is a post-transition metal. Transition metals — the largest group of elements, which includes copper, lead, iron, zinc and gold — are very hard, with high melting points and boiling points. Post-transition metals share some characteristics of transition metals but are softer and conduct more poorly. In fact, bismuth’s electric and thermal conductivity is unusually low for a metal. It also has a particularly low melting point, which enables it to form alloys that can be used for molds, fire detectors and fire extinguishers. 

The facts

Atomic number (number of protons in the nucleus): 83
Atomic symbol (on the periodic table of elements): Bi
Atomic weight (average mass of the atom): 208.98040
Density: 9.79 grams per cubic centimeter (5.6 ounces per cubic inch)
Phase at room temperature: solid
Melting point: 520.53 degrees Fahrenheit (271.4 degrees Celsius)
Boiling point: 1,564 F (2,847 C)
Number of natural isotopes (atoms of the same element with a different number of neutrons): 1
Most common isotope: Bi-209

Discovery of Bismuth
Though bismuth had been known as early as 1400, it was frequently confused with lead because it was similarly a heavy metal with a low melting point, according to the Royal Society of Chemistry. French chemist Claude Geoffroy the Younger was the first to prove that bismuth was distinct from lead in 1753.

The word “bismuth” is a Latinized version of an Old German word, “weissmuth” or “white substance,” possibly named after the element’s white oxide, according to Chemicool. 

Sources of bismuth
Naturally occurring bismuth is found in small quantities throughout Earth’s crust both as a pure metal and combined with other elements in various compounds. The largest source of bismuth is found in the mineral bismuthinite, or bismuth sulfide. Bismuth is typically obtained as a by-product in refining lead, copper, tin, silver, and gold ores found in Bolivia, Peru, Japan, Mexico, and Canada.

Properties of bismuth
Compared to other metals, bismuth is the most diamagnetic; that is, it resists being magnetized and is repelled by a magnetic field. It also has low electric conductivity and the greatest electrical resistance when placed in a magnetic field.

It has a very low thermal conductivity — lower than any other metal except mercury. It also has a relatively low melting point, especially when alloyed with tin and lead. When liquid bismuth freezes, it expands rather than contracts because it forms a crystalline structure similar to water. Four other elements expand when they freeze: silicon, gallium, antimony and germanium.