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
This planet has a giant ring system 200 times larger than Saturn’s
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
The long history of women in Congress
Ana Swanson
ADVERTISEMENT
No more
Know more
Why you should never start a land war in Asia, by the numbers
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
More than 20,000 foreign fighters have joined ISIS
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Racial income inequality is worse than you think
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
How much snow it takes to cancel school in your area
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
This gorgeous photo shows a view of the Rockies from the International Space Station
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
How much do the top 1 percent make in your state?
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Map: Nearly 400,000 people have been displaced in Ukraine
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
What ‘Eye of the Tiger’ and ‘Party Rock Anthem’ look like as charts
Ana Swanson
No more
Know more
Ana Swanson