To date, 118 chemical elements have been found. Professor Mario Markus, Max Planck Institute for Molecular Physiology, Dortmund, Germany, takes a look at each element, presenting a poem based on its natural properties along with a scientific overview of each element.
All 118 poems – as well as some poems about elements that only exist in theoretical simulations – are published in the book Chemical Poems: One On Each Element by Mario Markus. ChemViews magazine will publish a selection of these poems over the next months.
Very soft, silvery-white, glossy metal. Density: 7.31 g/cm³. It was discovered by the Germans Ferdinand Reich and Theodor Richter in 1863. Its optical spectrum shows an indigo-blue (between violet and blue) line, hence, the name of the element.
It is used primarily as indium oxide doped with zinc, which is called ITO, in flat screens, computers and very large televisions . Because
 S. Winchester, Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded,
A century goes by.
Professor Mario Markus
Max Planck Institute for Molecular Physiology, Dortmund, Germany.
Chemical Poems – One On Each Element,
Dos Madres Press 2013.
Perfectbound, 308 pages, English, $30
Interview with Mario Markus: Poetry and Chemistry,
ChemViews Magazine 2013.
The poems have also been published in German in:
- Chemische Gedichte,
Shaker Media, Herzogenrath, Germany, 2011.
See all poems published so far by ChemistryViews.org