|Neodymium was discovered by separating the components of alleged element didymium. |
Mosander extracted the rare earth didymium from lanthana. Later it was concluded that didymium was in fact two elements. In 1879 Francois Lecoq de Boisbaudran showed that it contained samarium.
After three years Carl Auer von Welsbach separated the residual didymium into two earths, the elements of which were named as praseodymium (green twin) and neodymium (new twin) so retaining a part of the original name, with a new suffix "neo" - new.
|Lanthanide Neodymium is the second most abundant of all lanthanides. Its crustal concentration exceeds that of lanthanum, 2.5x10-3 and 1.8x10-3% respectively, 9.2x10-6 mg/L in seawater. With other rare earth elements of the cerium subgroup it is found in minerals monazite and bastnasite (up to 20% Nd2O3) as well as in loparite and its own mineral aeschynite, which contains oxides of calcium, thorium, tantalum, niobium, yttrium, lanthanum, and lanthanides with cerium and neodymium domination. Natural neodymium has 7 isotopes, with mass numbers from 142 to 146 as well as 148 and 149.|