One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Thorium dioxide, a white refractory solid used in making gas mantles and other materials for high-temperature applications.
- ‘The Austrian chemist, C. von Welsbach, perfected the thoria gas mantle that improves the light output of coal-gas flame and to this day has not been improved significantly.’
- ‘The major disadvantage of thoria are the environmental issues due to the exposure to the alpha particles emitted by thorium.’
Mid 19th century: from thorium, on the pattern of words such as alumina and magnesia.
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