Our internal communications system, Elements (the building blocks of the NFTA) is loosely based on the periodic table format. So, it seems appropriate that we recognize National Periodic Table Day, February 7.

The periodic table actually has a very long history. It and the discovery of elements impacted science in many ways. Ancient man only knew of a few elements. However, by the 1st century A.D., mankind knew about the elements of gold, silver, copper, iron, lead, tin, mercury, sulfur, and carbon. Over time, we added arsenic, antimony, phosphorus, and zinc to our discoveries. By 1809, there were 47 discovered elements. It was time to organize, and Johann Döbereiner made one of the earliest attempts to do that. He organized the elements in 1817 into groups of three, or triads, based on similar qualities.

Since the early 20th century, the periodic table remains largely unchanged. However, some researchers suggest new approaches to the periodic table in the future while maintaining its integrity as one of the most valuable tools in the science of chemistry. The current table tallies a total of 118 elements. Can you name 10? 20? All? 

If you want to hear a little more about the periodic table, you can watch the National Calendar's video: National Periodic Table Day