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ArticleName Mendeleev’s great scientific predictions (marking the 150th anniversary of the Periodic law)
DOI 10.17580/tsm.2019.10.01
ArticleAuthor Akchurin R. Kh.

MIREA — Russian Technological University, Institute for Physical Technology, Moscow, Russia:

R. Kh. Akchurin, Professor at the Department of Materials Physics and Chemistry named after B. A. Dogadkin, Doctor of Engineering Sciences, e-mail:


This paper tells the history of Periodic law developed by D. I. Mendeleev in 1869 while describing preceding attempts to systemize chemical elements. Great attention is given to the work of the German chemist Meyer who in 1864 published a table in which elements were arranged according to their valencies and atomic weights. And in 1870 he presented the second table of elements, which, according to him, was identical to Mendeleev’s system. Similar to Mendeleev’s table, his table had gaps. However, Meyer didn’t say that there could be elements yet undiscovered that could fill the gaps. And this is a principal difference between Meyer’s table and Mendeleev’s Periodic law. The latter helped predict 36 unknown elements and their properties. Discovery of the first two of unknown elements, referred to by Mendeleev as ‘eka-silicium’ and ‘eka-aluminium’ — i. e. germanium (Ge) and gallium (Ga), provided solid proof of the validity and predictive capacity of the Periodic law. Germanium and gallium played a major role in the further development of semiconductor electronics. The paper gives a brief description of the history of these elements telling about the evolution of their production and application in hightech areas. It also provides some information about the global market of germanium and gallium and domestic producers of materials designed on their basis. It is noted that Mendeleev emphasized the development of the country’s industry and had a solid civic stand.

keywords D. I. Mendeleev, Periodic law, germanium, gallium, market, electronics

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