Technology Trivia Quiz
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6. Hot metal
“Misch metal”, a substance that ignites when scratched, is widely used in the manufacture of what commonplace object?
Your answer — B) Smoke detectors — was incorrect.
Misch metal is a mixture of “rare earth” elements like lanthanum, praseodymium and cerium. It is combined with iron in the manufacture of lighter “flints” (which are not made of flint rock). Misch metal was discovered in 1903 by Baron von Welsbach, who also invented cerium-based mantles for gas lanterns.
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