a rare, grayish, radioactive, metallic chemical element, one of the actinides, found in monazite and thorite: it is used in magnesium alloys, the making of gas mantles, electronic equipment, etc., and as a nuclear fuel: symbol, Th; at. no., 90
ModL: so named (1829) by Baron Jöns Jakob Berzelius, its discoverer < ON Thorr (see Thor) + -ium
A radioactive silvery-white metallic element that is recovered commercially from monazite. Its longest-lived isotope, the only one that occurs naturally, is Th 232 with a half-life of 1.41 × 1010 years. It is used in magnesium alloys, and isotope 232 is a source of nuclear energy. Atomic number 90; atomic weight 232.038; approximate melting point 1,750°C; approximate boiling point 4,500°C; approximate specific gravity 11.7; valence 4. See Table at element.