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Cobalt is one of the least abundant of the first-row transition metals. Its oxide ores, however, have been used in glass and pottery for thousands of years to produce the brilliant color known as “cobalt blue,” and its compounds are consumed in large quantities in the paint and ceramics industries. The heavier elements of group 9 are also rare, with terrestrial abundances of less than 1 ppb; they are generally found in combination with the heavier elements of groups 8 and 10 in Ni–Cu–S ores.
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number 1246120