Skip navigation
No more
Know more

This periodic table from the 70s shows how much of each element there is

The size of each space in the above periodic table represents (more or less) the relative abundance of that element on our planet. The serious problem you might not immediately see from the chart is that certain rare elements are also very important, such as helium (He). Helium is crucial in medical technology and aerospace engineering, among other scientific fields, and yet every grocery store in the country has a few balloons filled with the precious gas. If current trends continue, we will have no more usable helium on earth in about forty years. A tip of the hat to Maxime Duprez.

Max Ehrenfreund | March 10, 2014 at 2:39 pm
Know more: The helium crisis
No more
Know more
The most expensive paintings sold in Europe, in one gorgeous map
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Map: How the price of marijuana varies around the U.S.
Ana Swanson
ADVERTISEMENT
No more
Know more
Where Europe’s population is growing and shrinking, in 1 map
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Google’s image recognition brings a whole new meaning to cloud watching
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Where America’s biggest ancestral group — Germans — live in the U.S.
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Charted: Marriage and divorce since since 1867
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
The first American woman went to space 32 years ago today — 20 years after the Soviets
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
How poverty and hate crime go hand-in-hand in America
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Where the world’s fresh water is disappearing the fastest
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
A map shows how much your state contributes to the U.S. economy
Ana Swanson