UTEP Marks 150th Anniversary of Periodic Table of Chemical Elements
Last Updated on August 10, 2019 at 12:00 AM
Originally published August 10, 2019
By UC Staff
UTEP's Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry hosted a special event Friday, Aug. 9, 2019, to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the creation of the periodic table of chemical elements.
The event featured presentations by Luis Echegoyen, Ph.D., a research professor and the Robert A. Welch Chair in UTEP’s chemistry department, and Skye Fortier, Ph.D., assistant professor of chemistry. Dino Villagran, Ph.D., associate professor of chemistry, and undergraduate students presented a trivia session, followed by a reception.
The United Nations General Assembly and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization proclaimed 2019 as the International Year of the Periodic Table of the Chemical Elements (IYPT2019) to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Dmitri Mendeleev’s creation of the periodic table of the chemical elements in 1869. The periodic table is one of the most significant achievements in science, capturing the essence not only of chemistry, but also of physics, medicine, earth sciences and biology. The periodic table is an essential tool that aids scientists in forecasting the appearance and properties of the elements on Earth and the universe.
“The periodic table organizes the elements based on similar properties so the characteristics can be predicted based on their location on the table,” said Echegoyen, who is also president of the American Chemical Society, the world’s largest scientific organization. “The table can predict the properties of elements that have yet to be prepared synthetically. It can also allow the prediction of which elements are likely to react with each other.”
“The periodic table of the elements is essential to linking cultural, economic and political aspects of the global society through a common language,” Echegoyen said. “It is important to continue to attract interest in our youth in subjects like chemistry and physics in order to build the next generation of engineers and scientists.”