chem

The most poisonous ofthe chemical elements is...

A.Ar
B.As
C.Be
D.Bi
E.Pu

I thought in the beggining it was As, but got it wrong...so I believe it would be Pu...can somebody help...

Almost all compounds of As are toxic to humans but As metal, itself, probably wouldn't dissolve sufficiently before the body excreted it to be lethal. Frankly, I think this is a poor question because all of these (even Ar) could be dangerous. However, I think you are right to pick Pu. I found almost nothing on the internet when I searched google for the elements listed.

I agree with the poor question, it depends on what it meant by poisonous.

Pu is not as toxic as many other substances and probably has a similar toxicity as lead. The difficulty with Pu comes from its radio toxicity and the increased probability of developing cancer sometime in the future from ingesting it. There are many materials that will kill in minutes or days, whereas for Pu it could be many years.

The way to compare the toxicity of materials is to compare the LD50 value, the smaller the LD50 the more toxic the material.

As 763 mg/kg

Be 82 mg/kg (as sulfate)

Bi 4042 mg/kg (as nitrate - high probably because Bi compounds are not easily absorbed)

There are LD50s quoted for Pu, but these are calculated from the radiotoxicity and usually given as a low value <0.01 mg/kg. This results in the newspaper strapline of 'most toxic substance known to man'.

I hope this helps.

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asked by nivi

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