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MAX phase(s)[edit]

Should MAX phases be moved to MAX phase? This would be consistent with WP:SINGULAR, but there may be extenuating circumstances. YBG (talk) 02:26, 23 September 2018 (UTC)

See also WP:PLURAL. YBG (talk) 02:30, 23 September 2018 (UTC)
Singular. It is a list at best, not a class. And IMO no other plural-rules apply. -DePiep (talk) 07:07, 23 September 2018 (UTC)
  • But why is it named "Phases" at all? DePiep (talk) 23:51, 23 September 2018 (UTC)
    Good point. Phase lists many definitions, including Phase (matter), a physically distinctive form of a substance, such as the solid, liquid, and gaseous states of ordinary matter—also referred to as a "macroscopic state". wikt:phase says A component in a material system that is distinguished by chemical composition and/or physical state (solid, liquid or gas) and/or crystal structure. It is delineated from an adjoining phase by an abrupt change in one or more of those conditions. But the article, while explaining MAX in detail nowhere explains "phase". Can anyone check the literature to come up with an explanation? And perhaps decide what is the best article? From a linguistic point of view, "MAX phase alloy" seems much better than either MAX phases or MAX phase, but I defer to others. YBG (talk) 17:30, 29 September 2018 (UTC)

─────── Having re-read WP:PLURAL, I now propose to move the article to MAX phase alloys. It seems more a class than a list. YBG (talk) 22:07, 11 December 2018 (UTC)

Categories into plural?[edit]

  • Reading WP:PLURAL especially exception #1 re Class (set theory) and further orthography, I think we should re-example re-examine our our category names: "Alkali metals"? (article title, periodic table legend). -DePiep (talk) 05:43, 12 October 2018 (UTC)
    As I read WP:PLURAL, it seams obvious that our category articles should be plural. These articles seem to fit WP:PLURAL so well that they could well serve as additional bulleted examples. YBG (talk) 07:07, 12 October 2018 (UTC)
    I agree. If none disagrees, please start a Requested Move discussion for these categories.--R8R (talk) 13:57, 12 October 2018 (UTC)
    Let's flesh it out a bit first. See consequences, check similar/different situations. -DePiep (talk) 15:55, 12 October 2018 (UTC)
Would imply MetalMetals. -DePiep (talk) 22:08, 13 October 2018 (UTC)
I doubt it. While, for example, alkali metals are clearly first and foremost a specific set of elements that often go together, this is not the case with metals, which is first and foremost rather a singular term that applies to many elements. The word "metal" simply has too much value on its own to be considered primarily as a subset of the chemical elements.
I think we should pluralize titles of our sets of elements that we use in our main PT (alkali metal, post-transition metal, etc.) and alike categories that don't fit into that scheme (platinum group metals, pnictogens, etc.) as well as group and period articles (group 3 element, period 6 element, etc.)--R8R (talk) 12:14, 14 October 2018 (UTC)
I mentioneed "metal" because it is in the same PT legend, only one class higher. That is, if we apply class concepts & naming to alkali metals etc., we should also appy it to the higher class. Wrt "platinum group metals" &tc.: probably yes, sure let's get that list together (from here?). wrt group 3 element: never into "group 3 elements", change it into "group 3". PT groups already have a name, no need to create a detour. "FC Barcelona" is the club, not "FC Barcelona players" (IOW, don't define a class by listing its members, but do so by describing/naming the class). See the 2013 disappointment. In general, we need to apply the "class" concept thoroughly (as applied by linguists, mathematicians, ...). -DePiep (talk) 18:18, 14 October 2018 (UTC)
Metal is used not only to name a class of ~95 chemical elements, but also for innumerable alloys and other compounds. In common speech, it refers to a generic type of material, not to a specific class, comparable to plastic, wood or paper. Like soap and glass, it has both a common definition and a technical chemical definition. But our category names and the group names refer to definite finite classes of elements, and so IMHO should be treated differently. I would have our PT legend say "[[alkali metals]]" but "[[metal]]s" for consistency. YBG (talk) 20:54, 14 October 2018 (UTC)
(re last sentence: I think you meant to write the opposite?) Sounds good. Still, if the article stays "metal", we can label it "metals" in the PT legend. SAme for "non-metal/s" I guess. What with article "metalloid/s"? -DePiep (talk) 04:57, 15 October 2018 (UTC)

────────────────────@DePiep: No, I think I said it as I intended. Here is what I'd see as the first part of our PT footer legend:

[[metal]]s [[metalloids]]? [[nonmetals]]?
[[Alkali metals]] [[Alkaline earth metals]] [[Lanthanides]] [[Actinides]] [[Transition metals]] [[Post-transition metals]] [[Reactive nonmetals]] [[Noble gases]]

This has the metal article title in the singular but all other category and super-category article titles in the plural, although ? indicates I'm a bigbit unsure about "metalloid" and "nonmetal". YBG (talk) 05:53, 15 October 2018 (UTC)

OK, it was about the wikilabels etc. We understand that the plural article pages do have the content, not redirect. -DePiep (talk) 15:23, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
Yea, I was trying to indicate by the wikilinks which article would be the real article with content. YBG (talk) 17:51, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
───────────────────────── re the ?-question marks remaining: better [[metalloids]] as article (because the chemical class is not main issue), and treat nonmetals like metals: [[nonmetal]]s because similar to "metal" more general meaing. -DePiep (talk) 00:35, 21 October 2018 (UTC)
OK, I'll buy in to [[metalloids]]. But I would decide [[nonmetal]]s/[[nonmetals]] based on the article content because:
  • An article titled [[nonmetals]] seems like it would describe a definite class rather than a type of substance, so I would expect to see an article about a definite class of 17± specific chemical elements.
  • An article titled [[nonmetal]] seems like it would describe a type of substance rather than a definite class, so I would expect to see not only about those specific chemical elements, but also about substances commonly referred to as non metal like paper, wood, glass, and the like, as in the sign I described at User talk:YBG/Archive 4 § Re nonmetals
It is a subtle distinction, but one reinforced by the article metal which describes not a (just) specific definite class of chemical elements but rather a general type of substance; not just metallic chemical elements, but also alloys and other "metal" substances in the common vernacular. But maybe this is too subtle. Thoughts? YBG (talk) 08:36, 21 October 2018 (UTC)
(do not archive) -DePiep (talk) 15:13, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
While not in our standard legend, rare-earth metal/s might qulify for plural for the same reason. Todo: check other set names in Names for sets of chemical elements. -DePiep (talk) 15:17, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
So YBG, following your clear legend illustration above: we want article titles (=pages with the content) in plural for our categories, but not for top categories (metal, nonmetal, and therefor metalloid). That's eight to be plural (AMs -- NGs). We better not introduce other name changes, I strongly suggest. Now how to proceed? Strangely, WP:MOVE is not clear. I guess we need to start at Talk:Alkali metal. Anyway, shall we go on and spend serious time on this? I'd like it to be done convincingly crisp & clean. -DePiep (talk) 21:22, 15 December 2018 (UTC)
  • (do not archive for now) -DePiep (talk) 21:34, 24 January 2019 (UTC)

Categories into plural: step 1[edit]

I am preparing a proposal to change these article names into plural (so that Alkali metals has the content). However, I found this thing we should solve first. Currently, the names in the legend are singular! That does not support the wish to make them plural:

I propose to make these texts show as plural in the legend (use labels: [[Alkali metal|Alkali metals]]). Reasoning re WP:PLURAL and class is in step 2, below (=in the actual proposal). YBG

!votes? -DePiep (talk) 17:49, 17 February 2019 (UTC)
  • support. Excellent starting point for this change. As usual, @DePiep:, your attention to detail serves our project well. YBG (talk) 06:06, 18 February 2019 (UTC)
  • Comment: re plural usage: when meaning a class, wouldn't that imply we should take a look at articles text like nonmetal and infoboxes: plural sectionheaders in there? Is this a WP:ELEMENTS guideline ahead? -DePiep (talk) 06:04, 19 February 2019 (UTC)
  • Support. Indeed a good place to start; I find more often than not that we speak of element categories as a whole, which does imply WP:PLURAL. ComplexRational (talk) 14:10, 19 February 2019 (UTC)
  • Support I've read WP:PLURAL a few times and arrived to the conclusion this is indeed the sort of thing plural forms in titles are reserved for.--R8R (talk) 15:23, 19 February 2019 (UTC)
  • Asking Sandbh, Double sharp could you chime in? You've been working extensively with this in articles. -DePiep (talk) 19:04, 19 February 2019 (UTC)
  • Comment Plural for article names is fine. Plural for legend names is odd. When I see Na in red, and look up the legend, I see that Na is an alkali metal. It is not an "alkali metals". Sandbh (talk) 23:42, 19 February 2019 (UTC)
    That's the point, albeit inversed. What you see here is: Na is in the class of alkali metals, good. The class is defined by itself, not by listing its elements. (Not: "FC Barcelona team is these eleven players", but "These eleven players are in the FC Barcelona team"). The class is not defined by its member list.
    Sure one can write & link: "Sodium is an alkali metal", still then the article starts with: "The alkali metals are a ...". The class is the predominant meaning, and so it is used in the legend. And sure, plurals in the legend do not break the reading or intention, it's about one's understanding.
    Please take another look at WP:PLURAL and class (set theory) definitions to get the orthography of our category classification. -DePiep (talk) 07:46, 20 February 2019 (UTC)
    (edit conflict) I wouldn't have a problem with plural legends. If I see Na in red, and look up the legend, I see that Na is one of the alkali metals. Just like if the legend is in the singular, I don't look at the legend and say, Oh, the red swath is an alkali metal; no, I'd say, Oh, each red cell is an alkali metal. I think singular legend and plural legend both work OK. But I'd prefer to have the legend correspond to the article title. So currently, I prefer the legend to be singular, but if we change the article title to plural, I'd prefer the legend to be plural. YBG (talk) 07:51, 20 February 2019 (UTC)
    Asking Sandbh to take an other check. Yes, as you describe the singular can be used in the legend, lingustically correct. However, the proposal is to use plural for the same reason their articles better be plural: it is the name of a class, linguistically correct too of course. Also, please specify how strong you oppose this: block it, or is the change acceptable for you ;-) ? (Problem is that we'd have a contradiction when concluding "plural" for the article but "singular" when actually used as a class name). -DePiep (talk) 10:47, 26 February 2019 (UTC)
    Just a note that deciding to use the plural form to name the article about the class does not prohibit us from using the singular for a member of the class. However, IMO in high-profile situations (like legends) where either singular or plural could be reasonably used, it seems to me we are better off being consistent with the article titles. But I will bow to any strongly held opinion to the contrary. YBG (talk) 17:06, 26 February 2019 (UTC)
    Waiting here for Sandbh, thats all. -DePiep (talk) 23:15, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
Support Sandbh (talk) 11:11, 1 March 2019 (UTC)

Categories into plural: step 2[edit]

After step 1, we can propose to change the article titles. That proposal (step 2) is in my User:DePiep/sandbox2.

We can discuss the sandbox preparation here (do not !vote the proposal itself now). I want a non-problematic change, so it must be convincingly strong right away (unlike failed attempt like this, six years of linguistical pain). YBG -DePiep (talk) 17:49, 17 February 2019 (UTC)

Step 3: Formal Move proposal[edit]

See Talk:Alkali_metal#Requested_move_28_February_2019. -DePiep (talk) 22:31, 23 March 2019 (UTC)
Unfortunately, it was closed as "no consensus" without further elaboration. My impression was that thos involved (WP:ELEM, WP:CHEMISTRY) had a better grasp and lesser need to invoke parallels-or-not (dog/dogs). -DePiep (talk) 08:55, 12 April 2019 (UTC)

"element with symbol" or "element with the symbol"[edit]

I had noticed that User:DePiep had changed the upcoming TFA on germanium to use the first wording and found that an odd phrasing. DePiep mentioned that this was the way all the element articles phrased it and said that I should bring the question here if I felt that that should change. I am now doing so.--Khajidha (talk) 16:10, 27 February 2019 (UTC)

I personally think the element articles should read "with the symbol" instead, as it feels more natural to me too. On the other hand, it is a small difference and my opinion on it is not strong, because omitting the article does not sound really wrong to me either. Double sharp (talk) 03:44, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
I also don't have a strong preference, but I lean slightly to omitting the article, mostly because there is no article in from of "atomic number" (yea, I know, that's just a hobgoblin). But regardless, I think it best to consider this issue by looking at the entire sentence:
  1. Germanium is a chemical element with symbol Ge and atomic number 32.
  2. Germanium is a chemical element with the symbol Ge and atomic number 32.
YBG (talk) 04:57, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
Here's an alternative:
YBG (talk) 06:01, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
I like your alternative. --Khajidha (talk) 17:32, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
@DePiep, Khajidha, Double sharp, Sandbh, Dank, David Levy, and ComplexRational: If we're going to change it to my alternative, now is the time to do it ... the FA goes live in a few hours. YBG (talk) 21:35, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
Thoughts? - Dank (push to talk) 22:03, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
  • No. "The symbol" pertains to an existing symbol. But an element symbol is 'new'. -DePiep (talk) 22:44, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
    Also, YBG, this is not about a change in the TFA. It is about a change in all 118+ element articles. (TFA follows article). -DePiep (talk) 22:47, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
    Actually, I thought this discussion had to do with making the FA blurb acceptable to those who objected to the absence of "the". I was not offering my alternative as a suggestion to modify all 118+ articles, though that could be taken up separately.
    You say "The symbol" pertains to an existing symbol. But an element symbol is 'new'. In Article (grammar) § Definite article it says
    The definite article is used to refer to a particular member of a group or class. It may be something that the speaker has already mentioned or it may be something uniquely specified. There is one definite article in English, for both singular and plural nouns: the.
    This explanation may be helpful to some people. YBG (talk) 23:22, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
───────────────────────── Do not change the TFA. To change all 118+ articles, start a talk. -DePiep (talk) 23:28, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
Since the element symbols are unique to each element, it seems clear from YBG's provided explanation that all 118+ articles should be changed to add "the". And it should be done as soon as possible, at least for Ge as first priority, because this is a matter of correct English. Double sharp (talk) 23:37, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
No, again, to this: a symbol like 'Ge' is not an universal symbol, so not a 'the' symbol.
THE symbol "Mercury symbol.svg" was pre-known, universal, and re-used for both Mercury (planet) and Mercury (element) and more. -DePiep (talk) 23:53, 28 February 2019 (UTC)
Where are you getting this "universal symbol" requirement from? I've never heard of such a thing. And it seems neither has anyone else.--Khajidha (talk) 00:00, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
"THE symbol x" is universal aka preknown aka existing aka generic aka ... . "Ge" is not, it was invented for Ge as a symbol and for Ge only. -DePiep (talk) 00:14, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
Repeating it doesn't make it true. "The symbol $ represents the dollar". It's just basic English grammar. --Khajidha (talk) 00:17, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
Duh? You asked for clarification, I clarified, then you say "repetition"???
Anyway, "$" is a "THE symbol $" indeed (you self-contradict). Symbols are not grammar btw. "Ge" is *not* a THE symbol, it is new & unique and probably you did not even know it is a symbol. -DePiep (talk) 00:22, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
You did not explain, you simply repeated your assertion. Where is this so called rule artuculated? I know quite well that it is a symbol, I lesrned that many yesrs ago in middle school. And the grammar comment was about the use of "the".
I say: "THE symbol x" is an universal, existing symbol "x", and "symbol Ge" is incidental, unique, not existing and so not a "THE symbol". hth -DePiep (talk) 00:59, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
Yes, YOU say. You have yet to answer my question of where you have encountered this rule or what language authority supports it. It is cintradicted by my entire experience with the discussion of symbols in English. --Khajidha (talk) 01:36, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
Yes: I say. That is: I do not decide as a god, I try sincerely to explain what I mant to write. -DePiep (talk) 02:11, 1 March 2019 (UTC)

The edit that removed "the" was made on the 26th ... that's not enough time to know where the consensus lies (for the blurb, not the article). The second sentence of the blurb says "chemically similar to silicon (Si) and tin (Sn)". Since that's the format we're using in the blurb for silicon and tin, it makes sense to use that format for germanium too, and I just made the change. I'm not taking a position on "the". - Dank (push to talk) 00:28, 1 March 2019 (UTC)

TFA blurb follows article. Article has no "THE", as no element articles has, good & consistent. Case closed. (If someone wants to change that: go ahead, propose it, for all 118+ element articles then). This is SOP for TFA, what else can I say. (Also, *if* this question were asked properly, you know my argument). -DePiep (talk) 00:46, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
All right, I shall propose it then: Double sharp (talk) 02:03, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
Well, depending on what timezone everybody is in, the FA is up in some parts of the world. Now, time to weigh in. Sure DePiep, Germanium may not have a symbol that is represented by a specific ASCII character as the ampersand and dollar sign do, but that does not take away from the fact that Germanium has a symbol, and that symbol is Ge. Even if it isn't one character, the two letters "GE" serve as the universal symbol for Ge. If this element were to be, say, Gormanium (which wouldn't happen because Gormany isn't a country), then the symbol for Gormanium would be Go instead of Ge. There is not any possible incident in such case that the symbol for Gormanium would be anything besides Go; much is the case where there lacks to be an incident in which Germanium's symbol is anything besides Ge. Just because a new character was created to be a symbol for an idea, (such that § was made to represent a section of writing,) doesn't imply that two existing letters can be made to form a symbol as well. It can just as well be a universal representative for the element Germanium. And yes, there can be a symbol that can represent multiple different things. GE is a symbol for General Electric as much as it is for Germanium; it all comes down to the context at that point.UtopianPoyzin (talk) 04:20, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
Opening line from article The: "The is a grammatical article in English, denoting person(s) or thing(s) already mentioned, under discussion, implied, or otherwise presumed familiar to listeners or readers." That nicely describes it. (also re Khajidha). -DePiep (talk) 14:19, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
And I'm not seeing how that supports your position. The sentence is discussing the specific symbol used for Germanium, that falls under the "under discussion" portion of the definition. --Khajidha (talk) 14:36, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
PS-for the same reason, your post should read "The opening line from the article..." --Khajidha (talk) 14:38, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
re "how that supports your position": it is a plain argument against your OP. The article The, and Merriam Webster, clearly state that one can use the definite article "The" when the noun is already known. Of course, in the opening sentence we are introducing the symbol, which is the opposite of "known". HTH. -DePiep (talk) 11:42, 2 March 2019 (UTC)

Proposal: change "symbol X" to "the symbol X" in all element article lede sections[edit]

  • Support per YBG's quote describing article usage in English; the article should be used as the symbol is unique to the element. Double sharp (talk) 02:03, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
  • Oppose for all elements, per argumentation above. -DePiep (talk) 02:07, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
It is not about whether "Ge" is a symbol of sorts. It is about using the definite article "The" here. From the article: '... denoting thing(s) already mentioned' while that is exactly not the case in the opening sentence: it is introducing the terms. See also Merriam Webster Online Dictionary.: [The] — used as a function word to indicate that a following noun or noun equivalent is definite or has been previously specified by context or by circumstance - DePiep (talk) 10:57, 2 March 2019 (UTC)
And in this case, the symbol Ge is definite, even if it has not been previously been specified, so the article should be there. Our article on The also mentions in its first sentence: "The ... is a grammatical article in English, denoting persons or things already mentioned, under discussion [my emphasis], implied or otherwise presumed familiar to listeners or readers", and since the symbol (again) is under discussion, the article should again be there. Double sharp (talk) 13:47, 8 March 2019 (UTC)
"the symbol Ge is definite" ? Can't find that in the source (Mirriam Webster), so its hard to grasp. Do you mean that symbol "Ge" is defined and unchanging in RL? In that case, the word 'definite' is not grammatical. 'Definite' in grammar (noun phrase) means: identified, not generic (my wording, see [1]). re "[symbol Ge is] under discussion": too much of a stretch. "Under discussion" looses to "being defined" in the article opening sentence. Further below indeed the naming & symbol can be "under discussion" in the article body ('the symbol Xx was proposed because ...'). The opening sentence should use MOS:THETITLE, requiring a very strong reason to be an exception to "preserve" the definite article (as Odyssey is). -DePiep (talk) 10:56, 13 March 2019 (UTC)
  • Support per YBG. And btw. "the" has been added a lot of times to the element articles by many different users. but been reverted by one user only. Christian75 (talk) 05:28, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
  • Oppose because "with the symbol X and atomic number N" sounds even more clumsy than what we now have "with symbol X and atomic number N". Rather than cluttering up these WP:NOTVOTEs with a long list of possibilities, I will add a menu of choices elsewhere. YBG (talk) 07:10, 1 March 2019 (UTC)

Additional alternatives[edit]

The above discussion is considering only two choices, but there are many others; listed here using carbon.

  1. Carbon is a chemical element with symbol C and atomic number 6. (current form)
  2. Carbon is a chemical element with the symbol C and atomic number 6. (current proposal)
  3. Carbon is a chemical element having symbol C and atomic number 6.
  4. Carbon (symbol: C) is a chemical element with atomic number 6.
  5. Carbon (C) is a chemical element with atomic number 6.
  6. Carbon is the chemical element with symbol C and atomic number 6.
  7. Carbon is the chemical element with the symbol C and atomic number 6.
  8. Carbon is the chemical element having symbol C and atomic number 6.
  9. Carbon (symbol: C) is the chemical element with atomic number 6.
  10. Carbon (C) is the chemical element with atomic number 6.
#1(a) - #10(a) were added later YBG (talk) 15:15, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
  1. (a) Carbon is a chemical element with symbol C and the atomic number 6.
  2. (a) Carbon is a chemical element with the symbol C and the atomic number 6.
  3. (a) Carbon is a chemical element having symbol C and the atomic number 6.
  4. (a) Carbon (symbol: C) is a chemical element with the atomic number 6.
  5. (a) Carbon (C) is a chemical element with the atomic number 6.
  6. (a) Carbon is the chemical element with symbol C and the atomic number 6.
  7. (a) Carbon is the chemical element with the symbol C and the atomic number 6.
  8. (a) Carbon is the chemical element having symbol C and the atomic number 6.
  9. (a) Carbon (symbol: C) is the chemical element with the atomic number 6.
  10. (a) Carbon (C) is the chemical element with the atomic number 6.

Of all of these, I prefer #10. It has the fewest words (though not characters). It uses "the" to show that it is the one and only such element. It clearly separates the atomic number (which is defining) and the symbol (which is merely descriptive). It uses the WP convention of bolding synonyms. But I think several others are improvements over the current text (1) and the current proposal (2). Thoughts, anyone? YBG (talk) 07:31, 1 March 2019 (UTC)

I agree that #10 is the best. --Khajidha (talk) 12:20, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
To be complete: why not write "with the atomic number 6"? -DePiep (talk) 14:10, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
@DePiep: OK, I've added additional options #11-20, but I don't think it changes which one I think is best, nor, I suspect, Khajidah. YBG (talk) 15:15, 1 March 2019 (UTC)
Maybe my question could be taken literally? Why did no one not have 'natural' impulse to include the "The number" in this discussion? (My guess: because it does not feel that natural, for a reason). -DePiep (talk) 11:42, 2 March 2019 (UTC)
I agree with you that no one suggested that we add "the" before "atomic number" because it does not feel natural, and that it does not feel natural for a good reason. My list of all the options with "the" added before "atomic number" serves to highlight this unnaturalness, and may be instructive to others. Or maybe it will only serve to illustrate my OCD tendencies. YBG (talk) 19:13, 2 March 2019 (UTC)

Opening sentence more friendly[edit]

The opening sentences of our ledes for the elements are rather unfriendly, having too much of a focus on technical details (which are duplicated in any event, in the side bar). Take the lede paragraph for zirconium:

Zirconium is a chemical element with symbol Zr and atomic number 40. The name zirconium is taken from the name of the mineral zircon (the word is related to Persian zargun (zircon;zar-gun, "gold-like" or "as gold")), the most important source of zirconium.[1] It is a lustrous, grey-white, strong transition metal that closely resembles hafnium and, to a lesser extent, titanium. Zirconium is mainly used as a refractory and opacifier, although small amounts are used as an alloying agent for its strong resistance to corrosion. Zirconium forms a variety of inorganic and organometallic compounds such as zirconium dioxide and zirconocene dichloride, respectively. Five isotopes occur naturally, three of which are stable. Zirconium compounds have no known biological role.

Compare with the entry in the OED:

"A metallic element, obtained from zircon as a black powder or as a greyish crystalline substance. Symbol Zr."

Now have a look at this rewrite:

Zirconium is a lustrous, grey-white, strong transition metal that closely resembles hafnium and, to a lesser extent, titanium. Its name is taken from the name of the mineral zircon (the word is related to Persian zargun (zircon;zar-gun, "gold-like" or "as gold")), the most important source of zirconium.[2] It is mainly used as a refractory and opacifier, although small amounts are used as an alloying agent for its strong resistance to corrosion. It forms a variety of inorganic and organometallic compounds such as zirconium dioxide and zirconocene dichloride, respectively. Zirconium is the 40th member of the periodic table of chemical elements, and is denoted by the symbol Zr.

Which option is more friendly for the general reader? Sandbh (talk) 00:03, 2 March 2019 (UTC)

For starters, we could write the symbol as "Zirconium (Zr)". Does this improve friendly reading? Ans: is it correct (bold it)? -DePiep (talk) 11:34, 2 March 2019 (UTC)
My initial reaction was not positive, but it has grown on me. I still think the atomic number should figure a bit more prominently. What about moving some or all of the last sentence closer to the front, like this:
Zirconium (Zr) is a lustrous, grey-white, strong transition metal that closely resembles hafnium and, to a lesser extent, titanium. It is the 40th member of the periodic table of chemical elements.
Zirconium (Zr) is a lustrous, grey-white, strong transition metal that closely resembles hafnium and, to a lesser extent, titanium. It the chemical element with atomic number 40.
But if I give it a while longer, the idea of having the standardized, same-format-for-all-elements sentence at the end of the lede paragraph may also grow on me. YBG (talk) 19:28, 2 March 2019 (UTC)
I can support going to the "Zirconium (Zr)" opening (still wondering if the symbol should be bold). Moving the atomic number further away from opening (as YBG illustrated) is positive, because it allows for opening with a strong, readible sentence, highlighting main properties and reducing jargon & code. I reject this idea: "Zirconium (Zr, atomic number 40)", because too much bracketed text (glad we got rid of the pronuncation soup there). Still, the notion "chemical element" (as opposed to compound) is required, and in top. Comes to mind that the link chemical element is not in the infobox?!
For the same reason 'don't clutter the sentence', I'd say do not bold the symbol. -DePiep (talk) 11:07, 13 March 2019 (UTC)

-DePiep (talk) 11:07, 13 March 2019 (UTC)

In the infobox, we change the sectionheader into "In the periodic table of chemical elements" (2 lines in header?). -DePiep (talk) 12:12, 13 March 2019 (UTC)


  1. ^ Harper, Douglas. "zircon". Online Etymology Dictionary.
  2. ^ Harper, Douglas. "zircon". Online Etymology Dictionary.

Proposal, concept[edit]

I want to develop a proposal. Here are my suggestions (numbers per 100, no further meaning):

100. "Zirconium (Zr)" -- Article opens with name in bold, then symbol in brackets, not bolded.
200. Opening sentence: Free. It best be strong, catching, well-written, highlighting the element (not: ...?). Readability.
300. "chemical element": this clarification is required in the opening sentence imo, because readers must be told this is not a compound (diff: water - gold - stone, somehow). So we need, like: "gold is a chemcal element". Can be/is this word+wikilink in the infobox?
400. Atomic number: I don't know. It's in the infobox. Need to mention this in opening section?


Q01: Reader's interest re gold, re seaborgium?
Q02: Differentiate this proposal per set, like: He is not Sg?
(A?: a more free first sentence can solve much of this).
-DePiep (talk) 21:49, 13 March 2019 (UTC)
TBH, we could decide on #100 right away, but the "sentence" and readibility is also relevant. IMO. -DePiep (talk) 21:53, 13 March 2019 (UTC)
OK then. I will propose and support the format being "Zirconium (Zr)". -DePiep (talk) 20:32, 30 March 2019 (UTC)

Atomic weight of radioactive elements[edit]

For elements without a stable isotope, is it okay to use the isotopic mass instead of the atomic number of the longest-lived isotope for calculating molar masses? Either way, which isotope should I use for technetium? (The two longest-lived isotopes have half-lives that are very close to each other.) Care to differ or discuss with me? The Nth User 23:41, 13 March 2019 (UTC)

Asking for a friend: see highly useful Template:Chem molar mass(edit talk links history) development. -DePiep (talk) 23:43, 13 March 2019 (UTC)
In a case where you have the actual element, you presumably know which isotope you have of it, so you use that to calculate the molar mass. By default I'd suggest using the most commonly produced isotope, in this case 99, even if it happens to not be the most stable. Double sharp (talk) 05:10, 8 April 2019 (UTC)

Mendeleev's "cubic" system[edit]

Mendeleev's 1869 periodic table
van den Broek's "cubic" periodic table, 1911

@R8R: could you please look up one of Mendeleev’s articles? The citation is Zhurnal Russkoe Fiziko-Khimicheskoe Obshchestvo, 1869, 1, 60–77. The article may be "On the correlation between the properties of the elements and their atomic weight".

The bit I’m interested in is note 2, where Mendeleev says in part, "It appears to me that the most natural approach would be to construct a cubic system (the one recommended is exactly this). However, the attempts at such construction have not led to any real results." This quote is from Jensen’s 2005 book, Mendeleev on the periodic law: Selected writings, 1869–1905. It comprises English translations of German translations of the original Russian sources.

Nobody seems to know what to make of the subject passage in Note 2, which makes me suspect the translation was bad.

The question is, what did Mendeleev have in mind when he referred to a "cubic" system? The one he recommends in his article has nothing cubic about it. It is the same as the flat one published in 1869, in Zietschrift für Chemie, 12, 405—406.

In 1911, van den Broek attempted to design a "cubic" system, based on Mendeleev's note 2.

According to van den Broek his system was "[a] cubic system, consisting of five major periods, three small periods of 8 elements, and therefore a cube fives places high, three places deep and eight places wide, with 120 locations". In each case, the elements shown diagonally are those that are supposed to represented along the third dimension.

thank you, Sandbh (talk) 02:22, 17 March 2019 (UTC)

Hello. I have some comments:
  • Mendeleev in your quote says that "the attempts at such construction have not led to any real results." Given that, it rather makes sense, it makes sense he did not publish a cubic periodic table because he was unable to find to construct one.
  • An English translation of your article is freely available on the Internet. After reading his explanation (note 2 in the end of the article), I was unable to figure what kind of a cubic periodic table he had in mind (but maybe you can understand his line of thought?). He did not provide a sketch of what that would look like because, as I mentioned, he was unable to formulate what it should have looked like.
  • I was unable to look up a Russian original version of the article. It may be very well be possible, but I decided not to try too hard after running into initial difficulties in presumption the English translation would be enough anyway.--R8R (talk) 12:03, 17 March 2019 (UTC)
In the van den Broek table, why does it look like there are additional "unknown elements" not included in Mendeleev's table and certainly nonexistent in our periodic table? For example, there are three blank spaces between copper and zinc in columns IV–VI. Also, regarding atomic weights, what is meant by 52 for iron, 54 for cobalt, 56 for nickel, etc.? I am not quite sure what these spaces and values are supposed to represent, as I have never seen them in any other periodic table. Might this be related to the statement that "attempts at construction have not led to any real results"? ComplexRational (talk) 12:47, 17 March 2019 (UTC)
Van den Broek theorised that the system of elements contained exclusively triads. So he had to presume lots of unknown elements, even though he had already made radioactive decay products fill many vacant spaces. These were not new elements in any case. The 52, 54, and 56 etc are the atomic numbers x2. Sandbh (talk) 05:13, 21 March 2019 (UTC)

@R8R: The question is, why did Mendeleev say, "the one recommended is exactly this" i.e. cubic, when it clearly isn't? The English translation is a translation of the German translation of the Russian original. I have read that some translations of Mendeleev's works suffered from mistakes in translation. Given the confusing nature of Mendeleev's comments, and the fact that the English version is a translation of a translation I firmly suspect the problem lies in the translation of the original Russian. Hence my request. Sandbh (talk) 06:59, 18 March 2019 (UTC)

Ah, I see. Will do.--R8R (talk) 15:42, 18 March 2019 (UTC)
I was finally able to find a reprint of the said article. Indeed, you were correct in suspecting that the parenthesized note was not properly translated. The quote you listed at the top of this section would be closely translated to "It seems most natural to me to construct a cubic system (the one being suggested is plane-based), but attempts for its formation have also not led to any proper results" (p. 13). His phrasings a little bit off for me as a Russian speaker, so it's not just my poor translating skills :) --R8R (talk) 10:47, 19 March 2019 (UTC)
Wow! One word mistranslated in going from Russian to German, and the whole meaning changes, confusingly. Thank you very much R8R. Sandbh (talk) 05:03, 21 March 2019 (UTC)

Origin of name "flerovium"[edit]

The article needs to explain the origin of this official name. See Talk: Isotopes of flerovium#Origin of name?. --Thnidu (talk) 02:33, 8 April 2019 (UTC)

@Thnidu: It was already explained at the main article on the element at Flerovium#Naming. Double sharp (talk) 05:08, 8 April 2019 (UTC)
@Double sharp: Thank you. --Thnidu (talk) 11:22, 8 April 2019 (UTC)

IUPAC and Group 3[edit]

32-column periodic table with bifurcated Group 3

Here's a 32-column table which aims to resolve the La v Lu question, through a synthesis or rapprochement of each camp.


  • Helium colour coded as a noble gas;
  • No need for a split d-block, unless that's your preference;
  • Idealised electron configurations are shown, as are modular blocks;
  • Colour categories are my take on the chemistry involved; anyone can use their own colours and categories;
  • Black and white shading to emphasise the contrast between alkaline metals and the corrosive non-metals;

  • Rainbow shading to emphasise L-R progression;
  • Grey shading for noble gases to emphasise their bridging role;
  • Balanced 6-6-5-6 categorisation of the nonmetals;
  • Category notes expand the modern chemistry theme of the table;
  • Nice first row distinctiveness s >> p > d > f;

  • Group 3 noted as bifurcating after Y into an La branch, and an Lu branch;
  • Symmetry of the L-R progression in metallic to nonmetallic character is noted in Table 2;
  • The p-block, with no less than six categories, is Diversity Central;
  • Can be deconstructed into a Janet form, or a tetrahedral table in a cube;
  • Whole thing, including category notes, can be rearranged into a medium long table;

  • No conflict with IUPAC form;
  • Anomalous configurations listed;
  • Prior La-Ac tables remain valid;
  • Consistent with Scerri's views that La and Lu cannot be resolved by appeal to physical or chemical properties;
  • Not inconsistent with old school treatments of group 3 as including the Ln and An;

  • Consistent with the notion of inter-block bridging groups that show properties in between, or that are a mixture of, groups to either side: group 3; groups 11-12; and group 18; and
  • A chemistry book chapter on this group 3 would make fascinating reading (a good thing given, to date, that group 3 is supposed to be the least studied group).

Note the distinction between the 14 element wide f block, and the 30 elements of the Ln and An.

The black shading of the pre-transition metals can take some getting used to. Even so, I couldn’t go past the beauty of the black and white analogy.

While I feel the split-d block version offers more richness this is no longer a show-stopper for me.

I'm not suggesting we adopt this table. I've posted it here only in the context of the IUPAC project on the composition of group 3.

@Double sharp: @R8R: @Droog Andrey: @DePiep: I hope you like it.

How does it look to everyone? Sandbh (talk) 03:12, 9 April 2019 (UTC)

BTW Over five years ago, Double sharp began to feel that Group 3 bifurcates into -La-Ac, and -Lu-Lr. Sandbh (talk) 05:28, 9 April 2019 (UTC)

My ideal table would look something like this indeed, well maybe except that I'd keep He over Ne. ^_^ I also mentioned the group II bifurcation there (-Ca-Sr-Ba vs -Zn-Cd-Hg), so maybe we can think about resurrecting the old A-B numbering too. ^_^ Double sharp (talk) 05:50, 9 April 2019 (UTC)
Bifurcation, wow! Did not see that one coming. Looks like a wonderful scientific statement (description), and showing effective and elegant, this way. -DePiep (talk) 15:12, 9 April 2019 (UTC)
Precisely! Thank you DePiep. Sandbh (talk) 02:33, 10 April 2019 (UTC)

18-column form[edit]

Periodic table (18 columns, group 3 bifurcated, alternative categories)

Here is the same periodic table in 18-column form. I do not want to promote any 18-col form (32-column form is much much clearer), but I created this one to prevent bad or plain wrong 18-col forms to appear.

It is a true cut-and-paste from the original 32-col form (as any good 18-col PT should be). No information was changed. I added "f-block" to the box below, as the word nicely and correctly fits there: it is the complete f-block. I choose the U+2606 WHITE STAR (HTML ☆) instead of asterisks to indicate "This is describing the 3-bifurcated structure" (sort of, just like we use 2-asterisks vertical aligned to indicate "group 3 = Sc/Y/La/Ac form"): a nonbinding indicator.

I note that we cannot use the words "lanthanides" and "actinides" below (as older PTs often do), because these two categories are cut and split in this PT. This absence is not a loss. At enwiki we abandoned this habit some time ago (for the same reason, plus that we consistently don't write other category names in there either).

When drawing the same PT but having group 3 "left" being Sc/Y/La/Ac and group 3 "right" being Lu/Lr (split d-block, as enwiki does today) which as Sandbh stated is equally correct for a bifurcated group 3, the bottom rectangle would be 58–71 and 90–103 (with the "3" above Lu/Lr), but would *not* be the f-block.

Again, drawing this group 3 issue (any group 3 issue!) in 18- not 32-column form does not help to clarify. For example, now there are two columns "3" ~below each other, and one must know (one cannot easily see) that these are not vertically aligned in the fork. Still, when doing so at least one should use the right basic PT. -DePiep (talk) 09:39, 12 April 2019 (UTC)

The "f-block" addition may be superfluous since there is an f-block flag below the f-block already.
That's interesting about drawing this form in a split-d format. It probably doesn't matter that Lu/Lr would not be f-block, since in the current version La/Ac don't have any f-electrons either. You're going to have a discrepancy at one end of the f-block or the other. Since the block designations represent an idealised or pure form that doesn't exist in our universe, I may've been placing too much emphasis on the discrepancies as a way of guiding the group 3 question.
The richness and beauty of the 32-column form is astonishing. Yes, if you turn it in an 18-column form it becomes harder to see straight away that the two group 3 columns aren't vertically aligned, as such. Then again many students find it hard to work out how the block really fits into the main body of the table, despite the asterisks or stars. Perhaps there should be a little "Aha!" inset somewhere on the same page showing how the blocks fit together. Sandbh (talk) 06:21, 13 April 2019 (UTC)

Silberberg's table[edit]

32-column periodic table, with accompanying table showing idealised electron filling sequence

I was partly inspired by this image. Note the retention of the old school group numbering system, per Double sharp, and the identification of La-Ac as group 3B. Thumbs up Huzzah!

Helium is correctly shaded as an s-block element.

The inset in the gap between the s- and d-elements shows the simplified or idealised filling sequence.

The periodic table shows the purported actual filling sequence.

Rather than renting the d-block asunder by moving Sc-Y- to the left, over La-Ac, group 3 has two branches after Y: an La-Ac branch, and an Lu-Lr branch. The principle of one group one place is retained. I know of no IUPAC convention or recommendation the prevents a group from having two branches as shown in this way.

La and Ac are rightly shown as d elements.

Depicting Lu and Lr as f elements rather than d elements is inconsistent with the depiction of helium, at the end of the 1s row, as an s-element. OTOH, if Lu and Lr are shown as d elements that would result in 42 d elements, two too many to be consistent with quantum mechanics. That said, if group 18 can have one s element and six p elements there is no reason why group 3 could not have four d elements, and two faux-f elements.

I think, however, that our expectations are unrealistic.

There is the idealised filling sequence exemplified by the Madelung Rule (the inset).

Then there is the real filling sequence (per my 32-column table).

We try to cobble these two ideas together which, in my experience, has always resulted in disharmony and confusion because every author I’ve read that takes this approach fails to fully explain what is going on.

Even Silberberg, as interesting as his table is, doesn’t quite get it right. At least he says:

"Whenever our observations differ from our expectations, remember the fact always take precedence over the model; in other words the electrons don’t "care" what orbitals we think they should occupy." (p. 304)

Incidentally he treats the Ln as Ce to Lu.

By the time students get to the level at which this text is aimed at we can at least colour Lu and Th as d elements, and Lr as a p element, and then have an intelligent conversation about what’s going on. Sandbh (talk) 02:32, 10 April 2019 (UTC)

New notation form needed[edit]

In the Sandbh PT (2019-04-07), there now are two columns headed "3", depicting the single group 3 bifurcated. One column contains La, Ac, the other column contains Sc, Y, Lu, Lr.

It might be useful and needed to be able to differentiate between those two columns. For example, when the bifurcation is the topic (as it is in this PT, and likely in article Group 3).

  • In history: I note that until recently, there always has been multi-columns with single group id: VIII has three columns (now 8, 9, 10).
  • reuse A, B? Above, Double sharp suggests to reintroduce the A, B group notation (whichever form: CAS or European: an irrelevant difference in this), because of an other topic/discussion ("group 2 and 11 could be considered forked too"). First of all, that is a different discussion, and unclear, for now, is whether the outcome would be "forking" too. More important is, that for group 3 this would not solve anything in a helpful way: the columns (=6 elements) were, dependent on current group-3-presentation, either in "group IIIA/B" or "n/a" (=had no column number ever). I don't see any advantage to differentiate by writing "group 3, those formerly IIIA" and "group 3, those formery group n/a" (while still not identifying both new columns!).
Adding to this: reusing any "A/B" notation would add a third notational form with A/B: which is excactly why that notation was abandoned in the first place, when being just two! And we should not forget that the A/B notation used Roman numbers ("IIIA"), never arabic ("3A").
For these reasons, we should reject the suggestion in the bud.
Still, to describe the issue Double sharp points to (re groups IIA, IIB), the old notation is perfectly fine & useful as is.
  • Use sub-identifier. As presented in the Sandbh PT, both columns have a perfect identifier (descriptor) between the two:
group 3(f-block), group 3(d-block)
group 3f-block, group 3d-block
3 (f), 3 (d)
3f-block, 3d-block
Exact form can be improved, point is that we use their block letter to distinct.
Interpunction may matter; block letter always upright not italic. IMO, writing "3d, 3f" would be too confusing for example re elconfig.
Another notation could be:
group 3La, Ac; group 3Sc, Y, Lu, Lr.
This is more descriptive, eg in introductionary texts.
  • As before: by top element?. In general, we identified columns/groups by their top element: "The cobalt group" (which is not the same as "group VIII"). So in this case we could use "lanthium group", and "scandium group" respectively for the two columns? No, IMO. While probably correct by Red Book nomenclatura (cobalt & scandium are equal, right?), it may cause confusion at least. The cobalt example specifies one column out of three, and is never disputed. But the scandium example still is from an unstable PT form (not yet accepted scientifically; only when this bifurcation is accepted everywhere in RL stability might be in play). More fundamentally, as Sandbh described, the Sc, Y pair just as correct could be above La, Ac (as enwiki does today). For this, writing "scandium group" is ambivalent (ambiguous), and so requires clarification and includes implicit confusion. Now this could be true for the "group 3(?-block)" notation too (because a Sc, Y, La, Ac column is not a simple 3(?-block) column; but we know what we refer to because it is new notation. IOW, writing "scandium group" under a "group 3 = Sc, Y, La, Ac"-PT (=current enwiki) is a red flag.
  • Elsewhere. Below, Sandbh mentions #Silberberg's table. in there, this notation would not fit because the block letters change within a column. That would require more descriptive text (at least once, then use like "3 (d/f), 3 (f only)"? Of course for ease of writing, we hope this form does not prevail ;-).
My conclusion: When column distinction is needed, preferably the columns are identified by the block they are in. The notation should not be confusing (e.g., with electron configuration). For example:
group 3f-block, group 3d-block
-DePiep (talk) 09:47, 11 April 2019 (UTC)
Far out! That's a considered post, DePiep.
My simple view of group 3 as per the Silberberg table is that it's made up of Sc, Y, La, Lu, Ac, and Lr. It's more complicated that, of course, since there are two branches after Y. So, were you to write about group 3 from this perspective you'd have do a bit of comparative chemistry between Sc-Y-La-Ac, and Sc-Y-Lu-Lr, in order to be clear as to what's going on. How would you refer to each of this options/columns? Good question. There's only one group 3. I'd be inclined to call them the La branch, and the Lu branch. That would be analogous to the approach taken by Jensen (2018, p. 260) re groups 2 and 12: "This is resolved by placing the Ca branch in the (2+6) [i.e. group 2] and the Zn branch in [the same] group."
Re IIA and IIB and a bifurcation after Mg, this doesn't have enough puff. Sidgwick, in his classic book, "The chemical elements and their compounds" (1950, vol. 1, p. 193), wrote "The difference in properties between the two subgroups is less in Group II than in Group I, but it is still very marked." [underline added] Sanderson (1967, p. 403) continues the theme: "Consisting of more compact, smaller, more electronegative atoms than those of Group [2], the [Group 12] elements have a chemistry that, although formally similar, is actually quite different." [underline added]
On group 3, Sidgwick treats this as Sc, Y, La and the 14 succeeding elements up to Lu, and Ac. Sanderson does not have anything useful to say about group 3.
  • Jensen WB 2018, "Richard Abegg and the periodic table", in Scerri E and Restrepo G (eds), Mendeleev to Oganesson: A multidisciplinary perspective on the periodic table, Oxford University Press, New York, pp. 245−265
  • Sanderson RT 1967, Inorganic chemistry, Reinhold Publishing Corporation, New York
  • Sidgwick NV 1950, The chemical elements and their compounds, vol. 1, Clarendon Press, London

Article from Science mag about the current outlook on making superheavies[edit]

Here. (They also linked to this old one from 2012 when RIKEN got its third atom of Nh.) Double sharp (talk) 07:58, 12 April 2019 (UTC)

The SHE Factory is ready and the new accelerator was launched last December; this month it will be tested by redoing the 48Ca experiments to synthesise Fl and Mc. Double sharp (talk) 10:23, 12 April 2019 (UTC)

Daily Bruin article[edit]

A short item about the various layouts of the table, based on interviews with Eric Scerri, Philip Stewart, and myself.

It has a couple of shortcomings: "orientation" instead of "organization"; and an upside down Janet table, with He in two places, sort of. Otherwise interesting. Sandbh (talk) 05:30, 13 April 2019 (UTC)

Re the second image in short item:
Tell Eric Scerri, Philip Stewart, User:Sandbh: do not ever use an 18-column periodic table again. (It has caused enough trouble, as they all know). Wheatever you want to say: say it in 32-columns (>=32).
Yes, I understand the Eric and Philip both support a 32-column form. Sandbh (talk) 10:40, 14 April 2019 (UTC)
Also, someone could ask Pyykkö to solve & clarify group 3 in their description before going about extensions. -DePiep (talk) 20:02, 13 April 2019 (UTC)

colour/property edits to Elements articles[edit]

Hi, I'm assuming good faith, but a number of edits have been made to different element related articles by "Is Pepsi Ok?". At first glance there is nothing particularly wrong with these edits, but then specific changes are being made to our description of the elements which may not be as accurate as the original wording and such changes should be accompanied by citations to reliable sources. I don't want to discourage a good faith editor by reverting all their contributions so have brought it here for discussion. Cheers Polyamorph (talk) 05:44, 17 April 2019 (UTC)

"Is Pepsi Ok?" is Sethrc225 (talk · contribs) somehow. -DePiep (talk) 16:09, 17 April 2019 (UTC)
They have been notified/warned: User_talk:Sethrc225#April_2019_2. -DePiep (talk) 16:11, 17 April 2019 (UTC)

Thank you, I am trying to go back and add citations to all these claims at the moment. Thank you for the notice Sethrc225 (talk) 18:48, 17 April 2019 (UTC)Sethrc225

Thanks Sethrc225, and can I again stress to others that we should not be discouraging new editors, so have some patience while they learn the ropes please. Polyamorph (talk) 16:58, 18 April 2019 (UTC)

Detection of HeH+ in the interstellar medium[edit]

First compound in the universe. Helium acting as a metal. Extraordinary! Lends support to He over Be, with He coloured as a noble gas. Sandbh (talk) 10:56, 18 April 2019 (UTC)

HeH+ was known long ago, just only in the laboratory. Double sharp (talk) 17:22, 18 April 2019 (UTC)
Quite so. I was struck by the contrast between a laboratory curiosity and the cosmological beginning of chemistry. Sandbh (talk) 00:54, 19 April 2019 (UTC)