Strontium is an alkaline earth metal with the symbol Sr and atomic number 39.
Strontium metal bubbles fiercely on contact with water. It burns in air to produce both strontium oxide and strontium nitride, but since it only reacts with nitrogen below 380 °C, at room temperature it will only form the oxide.
Strontium metal is soft and silvery. Its salts tend to produce a scarlet-red flame in a fire.
Strontium metal may be purchased at GalliumSource, at 85$/ 2.5 kg.
Strontium is difficult to prepare and cheap to buy, so it is worth just buying the metal.
- Colored flames
- Strontium titanate
Strontium salts are non-toxic. They have been investigated for positive effects on bone mass, and strontium supplements are beginning to hit the market. However, that does not imply that consuming strontium salts produced in the lab is safe.
Just like calcium and all the alkali-earth metals under it, strontium metal corrodes easily on contact with air and water and must be stored under oil or in an inert atmosphere. The metal presents a fire hazard. Class D fire extinguishers should be used with strontium fires. Water will cause a hydrogen explosion.
Strontium can be safely disposed by reacting it with water or isopropanol and doesn't pose a hazard to the environment.