Group 5 element

Group 5 (by IUPAC style) is a group of elements in the periodic table. Group 5 contains vanadium (V), niobium (Nb), tantalum (Ta) and dubnium (Db). This group lies in the d-block of the periodic table. The group itself has not acquired a trivial name; it belongs to the broader grouping of the transition metals.

The lighter three Group 5 elements occur naturally and share similar properties; all three are hard refractory metals under standard conditions. The fourth element, dubnium, has been synthesized in laboratories, but it has not been found occurring in nature, with half-life of the most stable isotope, dubnium-268, being only 29 hours, and other isotopes even more radioactive. To date, no experiments in a supercollider have been conducted to synthesize the next member of the group, either unpentseptium (Ups) or unpentennium (Upe). As unpentseptium and unpentennium are both late period 8 elements it is unlikely that these elements will be synthesized in the near future.

Group 5 in the periodic table
Hydrogen Helium
Lithium Beryllium Boron Carbon Nitrogen Oxygen Fluorine Neon
Sodium Magnesium Aluminium Silicon Phosphorus Sulfur Chlorine Argon
Potassium Calcium Scandium Titanium Vanadium Chromium Manganese Iron Cobalt Nickel Copper Zinc Gallium Germanium Arsenic Selenium Bromine Krypton
Rubidium Strontium Yttrium Zirconium Niobium Molybdenum Technetium Ruthenium Rhodium Palladium Silver Cadmium Indium Tin Antimony Tellurium Iodine Xenon
Caesium Barium Lanthanum Cerium Praseodymium Neodymium Promethium Samarium Europium Gadolinium Terbium Dysprosium Holmium Erbium Thulium Ytterbium Lutetium Hafnium Tantalum Tungsten Rhenium Osmium Iridium Platinum Gold Mercury (element) Thallium Lead Bismuth Polonium Astatine Radon
Francium Radium Actinium Thorium Protactinium Uranium Neptunium Plutonium Americium Curium Berkelium Californium Einsteinium Fermium Mendelevium Nobelium Lawrencium Rutherfordium Dubnium Seaborgium Bohrium Hassium Meitnerium Darmstadtium Roentgenium Copernicium Nihonium Flerovium Moscovium Livermorium Tennessine Oganesson
group 4  group 6
IUPAC group number 5
Name by element vanadium group
CAS group number
(US, pattern A-B-A)
old IUPAC number
(Europe, pattern A-B)

↓ Period
Vanadium etched
Vanadium (V)
23 Transition metal
Niobium crystals
Niobium (Nb)
41 Transition metal
Tantalum, a single crystal
Tantalum (Ta)
73 Transition metal
7 Dubnium (Db)
105 Transition metal

primordial element
synthetic element
Atomic number color:


Like other groups, the members of this family show patterns in its electron configuration, especially the outermost shells, though niobium curiously does not follow the trend:

Z Element No. of electrons/shell
23 vanadium 2, 8, 11, 2
41 niobium 2, 8, 18, 12, 1
73 tantalum 2, 8, 18, 32, 11, 2
105 dubnium 2, 8, 18, 32, 32, 11, 2

Most of the chemistry has been observed only for the first three members of the group, the chemistry of dubnium is not very established and therefore the rest of the section deals only with vanadium, niobium, and tantalum. All the elements of the group are reactive metals with a high melting points (1910 °C, 2477 °C, 3017 °C). The reactivity is not always obvious due to the rapid formation of a stable oxide layer, which prevents further reactions, similarly to trends in Group 3 or Group 4. The metals form different oxides: vanadium forms vanadium(II) oxide, vanadium(III) oxide, vanadium(IV) oxide and vanadium(V) oxide, niobium forms niobium(II) oxide, niobium(IV) oxide and niobium(V) oxide, but out of tantalum oxides only tantalum(V) oxide is characterized. Metal(V) oxides are generally nonreactive and act like acids rather than bases, but the lower oxides are less stable. They, however, have some unusual properties for oxides, such as high electric conductivity.[1]

All three elements form various inorganic compounds, generally in the oxidation state of +5. Lower oxidation states are also known, but they are less stable, decreasing in stability with atomic mass increase.


Vanadium was discovered by Andrés Manuel del Río, a Spanish-born Mexican mineralogist, in 1801 in the mineral vanadinite. After other chemists rejected his discovery of erythronium he retracted his claim.[2]

Niobium was discovered by the English chemist Charles Hatchett in 1801.[3]

Tantalum was first discovered in 1802 by Anders Gustav Ekeberg. However, it was thought to be identical to niobium until 1846, when Heinrich Rose proved that the two elements were different. Pure tantalum was not produced until 1903.[4]

Dubnium was first produced in 1968 at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research by bombarding americium-243 with neon-22 and was again produced at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory in 1970. The names "neilsbohrium" and "joliotium" were proposed for the element, but in 1997, the IUPAC decided to name the element dubnium.[4]


Vanadium is named for Vanadis, the Scandinavian goddess of love. Niobium is named for Niobe, a figure from Greek mythology. Tantalum is named for Tantalus, a figure from Greek mythology. Dubnium is named for Dubna, Russia, where it was discovered.[4]


There are 160 parts per million of vanadium in the earth's crust, making it the 19th most abundant element there. Soil contains on average 100 parts per million of vanadium, and seawater contains 1.5 parts per billion of vanadium. A typical human contains 285 parts per billion of vanadium. Over 60 vanadium ores are known, including vanadinite, patronite, and carnotite.[4]

There are 20 parts per million of niobium in the earth's crust, making it the 33rd most abundant element there. Soil contains on average 24 parts per million of niobium, and seawater contains 900 parts per quadrillion of niobium. A typical human contains 21 parts per billion of niobium. Niobium is in the minerals columbite and pyrochlore.[4]

There are 2 parts per million of tantalum in the earth's crust, making it the 51st most abundant element there. Soil contains on average 1 to 2 parts per billion of tantalum, and seawater contains 2 parts per trillion of tantalum. A typical human contains 2.9 parts per billion of tantalum. Tantalum is found in the minerals tantalite and pyrochlore.[4]


Approximately 70000 metric tons of vanadium ore are produced yearly, with 25000 metric tons of vanadium ore being produced in Russia, 24000 in South Africa, 19000 in China, and 1000 in Kazakhstan. 7000 metric tons of vanadium metal are produced each year. It is impossible to obtain vanadium by heating its ore with carbon. Instead, vanadium is produced by heating vanadium oxide with calcium in a pressure vessel. Very high-purity vanadium is produced from a reaction of vanadium trichloride with magnesium.[4]

230,000 metric tons of niobium ore are produced yearly, with Brazil producing metric 210,000 tons, Canada producing 10000 metric tons, and Australia producing 1000 metric tons. 60000 metric tons of pure niobium are produced each year.[4]

70000 metric tons of tantalum ore are produced yearly. Brazil produces 90% of tantalum ore, with Canada, Australia, China, and Rwanda also producing the element. The demand for tantalum is around 1200 metric tons per year.[4]

Dubnium is produced synthetically by bombarding actinides with lighter elements.[4]


Vanadium's main application is in alloys, such as vanadium steel. Vanadium alloys are used in springs, tools, jet engines, armor plating, and nuclear reactors. Vanadium oxide gives ceramics a golden color, and other vanadium compounds are used as catalysts to produce polymers.[4]

Small amounts of niobium are added to stainless steel to improve its quality. Niobium alloys are also used in rocket nozzles because of niobium's high corrosion resistance.[4]

Tantalum has four main types of applications. Tantalum is added into objects exposed to high temperatures, in electronic devices, in surgical implants, and for handling corrosive substances.[4]


Pure vanadium is not known to be toxic. However, vanadium pentoxide causes severe irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat.[4]

Niobium and its compounds are thought to be slightly toxic, but niobium poisoning is not known to have occurred. Niobium dust can irritate the eyes and skin.[4]

Tantalum and its compounds rarely cause injury, and when they do, the injuries are normally rashes.[4]

Biological occurrences

Out of the group 5 elements, only vanadium has been identified as playing a role in the biological chemistry of living systems, but even it plays a very limited role in biology, and is more important in ocean environments than on land.

Vanadium, essential to ascidians and tunicates as vanabins, has been known in the blood cells of Ascidiacea (sea squirts) since 1911,[5][6] in concentrations of vanadium in their blood more than 100 times higher than the concentration of vanadium in the seawater around them. Several species of macrofungi accumulate vanadium (up to 500 mg/kg in dry weight).[7] Vanadium-dependent bromoperoxidase generates organobromine compounds in a number of species of marine algae.[8]

Rats and chickens are also known to require vanadium in very small amounts and deficiencies result in reduced growth and impaired reproduction.[9] Vanadium is a relatively controversial dietary supplement, primarily for increasing insulin sensitivity[10] and body-building. Vanadyl sulfate may improve glucose control in people with type 2 diabetes.[11] In addition, decavanadate and oxovanadates are species that potentially have many biological activities and that have been successfully used as tools in the comprehension of several biochemical processes.[12]


  1. ^ Holleman, Arnold F.; Wiberg, Egon; Wiberg, Nils (1985). Lehrbuch der Anorganischen Chemie (in German) (91–100 ed.). Walter de Gruyter. ISBN 3-11-007511-3.
  2. ^ Cintas, Pedro (2004). "The Road to Chemical Names and Eponyms: Discovery, Priority, and Credit". Angewandte Chemie International Edition. 43 (44): 5888–94. doi:10.1002/anie.200330074. PMID 15376297.
  3. ^ Hatchett, Charles (1802). "Eigenschaften und chemisches Verhalten des von Charlesw Hatchett entdeckten neuen Metalls, Columbium". Annalen der Physik (in German). 11 (5): 120–122. Bibcode:1802AnP....11..120H. doi:10.1002/andp.18020110507.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Emsley, John (2011). Nature's Building Blocks.
  5. ^ Henze, M. (1911). "Untersuchungen über das Blut der Ascidien. I. Mitteilung. Die Vanadiumverbindung der Blutkörperchen". Hoppe-Seyler's Zeitschrift für physiologische Chemie (in German). 72 (5–6): 494–501. doi:10.1515/bchm2.1911.72.5-6.494.
  6. ^ Michibata H, Uyama T, Ueki T, Kanamori K (2002). "Vanadocytes, cells hold the key to resolving the highly selective accumulation and reduction of vanadium in ascidians". Microscopy Research and Technique. 56 (6): 421–434. doi:10.1002/jemt.10042. PMID 11921344.
  7. ^ Kneifel, Helmut; Bayer, Ernst (1997). "Determination of the Structure of the Vanadium Compound, Amavadine, from Fly Agaric". Angewandte Chemie International Edition in English. 12 (6): 508. doi:10.1002/anie.197305081. ISSN 1521-3773.
  8. ^ Butler, Alison; Carter-Franklin, Jayme N. (2004). "The role of vanadium bromoperoxidase in the biosynthesis of halogenated marine natural products". Natural Product Reports. 21 (1): 180–8. doi:10.1039/b302337k. PMID 15039842.
  9. ^ Schwarz, Klaus; Milne, David B. (1971). "Growth Effects of Vanadium in the Rat". Science. 174 (4007): 426–428. Bibcode:1971Sci...174..426S. doi:10.1126/science.174.4007.426. JSTOR 1731776. PMID 5112000.
  10. ^ Yeh, Gloria Y.; Eisenberg, David M.; Kaptchuk, Ted J.; Phillips, Russell S. (2003). "Systematic Review of Herbs and Dietary Supplements for Glycemic Control in Diabetes". Diabetes Care. 26 (4): 1277–1294. doi:10.2337/diacare.26.4.1277. PMID 12663610.
  11. ^ Badmaev, V.; Prakash, Subbalakshmi; Majeed, Muhammed (1999). "Vanadium: a review of its potential role in the fight against diabetes". Altern Complement Med. 5 (3): 273–291. doi:10.1089/acm.1999.5.273. PMID 10381252.
  12. ^ Aureliano, Manuel; Crans, Debbie C. (2009). "Decavanadate and oxovanadates: Oxometalates with many biological activities". Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry. 103: 536–546. doi:10.1016/j.jinorgbio.2008.11010.

Further reading


Arsenic is a chemical element with symbol As and atomic number 33. Arsenic occurs in many minerals, usually in combination with sulfur and metals, but also as a pure elemental crystal. Arsenic is a metalloid. It has various allotropes, but only the gray form, which has a metallic appearance, is important to industry.

The primary use of arsenic is in alloys of lead (for example, in car batteries and ammunition). Arsenic is a common n-type dopant in semiconductor electronic devices, and the optoelectronic compound gallium arsenide is the second most commonly used semiconductor after doped silicon. Arsenic and its compounds, especially the trioxide, are used in the production of pesticides, treated wood products, herbicides, and insecticides. These applications are declining due to the toxicity of arsenic and its compounds.A few species of bacteria are able to use arsenic compounds as respiratory metabolites. Trace quantities of arsenic are an essential dietary element in rats, hamsters, goats, chickens, and presumably other species. A role in human metabolism is not known. However, arsenic poisoning occurs in multicellular life if quantities are larger than needed. Arsenic contamination of groundwater is a problem that affects millions of people across the world.

The United States' Environmental Protection Agency states that all forms of arsenic are a serious risk to human health. The United States' Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry ranked arsenic as number 1 in its 2001 Priority List of Hazardous Substances at Superfund sites. Arsenic is classified as a Group-A carcinogen.


Dubnium is a synthetic chemical element with symbol Db and atomic number 105. Dubnium is highly radioactive: the most stable known isotope, dubnium-268, has a half-life of about 28 hours. This greatly limits the extent of research on dubnium.

Dubnium does not occur naturally on Earth and is produced artificially. The Soviet Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) claimed the first discovery of the element in 1968, followed by the American Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory in 1970. Both teams proposed their names for the new element and used them without formal approval. The long-standing dispute was resolved in 1993 by an official investigation of the discovery claims by the IUPAC/IUPAP Joint Working Party, resulting in credit for the discovery being officially shared between both teams. The element was formally named dubnium in 1997 after the town of Dubna, the site of the JINR.

Theoretical research establishes dubnium as a member of group 5 in the 6d series of transition metals, placing it under vanadium, niobium, and tantalum. Dubnium should share most properties, such as its valence electron configuration and having a dominant +5 oxidation state, with the other group 5 elements, with a few anomalies due to relativistic effects. A limited investigation of dubnium chemistry has confirmed this. Solution chemistry experiments have revealed that dubnium often behaves more like niobium rather than tantalum, breaking periodic trends.

Group 5

Group 5 may refer to:

Group 5 element, chemical element classification

Group 5 (racing), FIA classification for cars in auto racing

Index of chemistry articles

Chemistry (from Egyptian kēme (chem), meaning "earth") is the physical science concerned with the composition, structure, and properties of matter, as well as the changes it undergoes during chemical reactions.Below is a list of chemistry-related articles. Chemical compounds are listed separately at list of organic compounds, list of inorganic compounds or list of biomolecules.


Moscovium is a synthetic chemical element with symbol Mc and atomic number 115. It was first synthesized in 2003 by a joint team of Russian and American scientists at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) in Dubna, Russia. In December 2015, it was recognized as one of four new elements by the Joint Working Party of international scientific bodies IUPAC and IUPAP. On 28 November 2016, it was officially named after the Moscow Oblast, in which the JINR is situated.Moscovium is an extremely radioactive element: its most stable known isotope, moscovium-290, has a half-life of only 0.65 seconds. In the periodic table, it is a p-block transactinide element. It is a member of the 7th period and is placed in group 15 as the heaviest pnictogen, although it has not been confirmed to behave as a heavier homologue of the pnictogen bismuth. Moscovium is calculated to have some properties similar to its lighter homologues, nitrogen, phosphorus, arsenic, antimony, and bismuth, and to be a post-transition metal, although it should also show several major differences from them. In particular, moscovium should also have significant similarities to thallium, as both have one rather loosely bound electron outside a quasi-closed shell. About 100 atoms of moscovium have been observed to date, all of which have been shown to have mass numbers from 287 to 290.


Nihonium is a synthetic chemical element with the symbol Nh and atomic number 113. It is extremely radioactive; its most stable known isotope, nihonium-286, has a half-life of about 10 seconds. In the periodic table, nihonium is a transactinide element in the p-block. It is a member of period 7 and group 13 (boron group).

Nihonium was first reported to have been created in 2003 by a Russian–American collaboration at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) in Dubna, Russia, and in 2004 by a team of Japanese scientists at Riken in Wakō, Japan. The confirmation of their claims in the ensuing years involved independent teams of scientists working in the United States, Germany, Sweden, and China, as well as the original claimants in Russia and Japan. In 2015, the IUPAC/IUPAP Joint Working Party recognised the element and assigned the priority of the discovery and naming rights for the element to Riken, as it judged that they had demonstrated that they had observed element 113 before the JINR team did so. The Riken team suggested the name nihonium in 2016, which was approved in the same year. The name comes from the common Japanese name for Japan (日本, nihon).

Very little is known about nihonium, as it has only been made in very small amounts that decay away within seconds. The anomalously long lives of some superheavy nuclides, including some nihonium isotopes, are explained by the "island of stability" theory. Experiments support the theory, with the half-lives of the confirmed nihonium isotopes increasing from milliseconds to seconds as neutrons are added and the island is approached. Nihonium has been calculated to have similar properties to its homologues boron, aluminium, gallium, indium, and thallium. All but boron are post-transition metals, and nihonium is expected to be a post-transition metal as well. It should also show several major differences from them; for example, nihonium should be more stable in the +1 oxidation state than the +3 state, like thallium, but in the +1 state nihonium should behave more like silver and astatine than thallium. Preliminary experiments in 2017 showed that elemental nihonium is not very volatile; its chemistry remains largely unexplored.

Periodic table forms
Sets of elements
See also
Group 5 elements

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