Chemical Element: francium

(Modern Latin: chemical element; named for France; radioactive metal)

Chemical-Element Information

Symbol: Fr
Atomic number: 87
Year discovered: 1939

Discovered by: Marguerite Perey (1909-1975), a French physicist.

  • Francium was discovered in 1939 by Marguerite Perey of the Curie Institute in Paris, (France) and its existence was predicted by Mendeléyev during the 1870’s.
  • Since its properties should track those of cesium/caesium rather closely, he called it eka-caesium.
  • Perey discovered a type of beta activity that was not quite like that of any other known isotope while working with the radioactive element actinium.
  • She tracked it down and found that it resulted from the breakdown of an isotope of element number 87 which is now called, “francium”.

Name in other languages:

French: francium

German: Francium

Italian: francio

Spanish: francio

Information about other elements may be seen at this Chemical Elements List.

A special unit about words that include chemo-, chem- may be seen here.