cad·​mi·​um | \ ˈkad-mē-əm \

Definition of cadmium 

: a toxic bluish-white malleable ductile divalent metallic element used especially in batteries, pigments, and protective platings — see Chemical Elements Table

Examples of cadmium in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Vapers had similar levels of the heavy metals — except cadmium — as the smokers. Rachel Becker, The Verge, "Is vaping better than smoking? Scientists studied pee to find out," 14 Dec. 2018 The facility also accepts contaminants such as arsenic, lead, zinc, cadmium and other metals. Keith Ridler, The Seattle Times, "Monitors check for radiation release after waste site blast," 20 Nov. 2018 Lead was found in at least one sample of each mug, arsenic in all of them, and in a few, cadmium. The Good Housekeeping Institute, Good Housekeeping, "GHRI Investigates Microwave-Safe Mugs," 28 Sep. 2011 Estimates say upward of 363,000 tons of zinc; 29,000 tons of lead; 1,700 tons of cadmium; 270 tons of arsenic, and 200 tons of mercury were dumped by the company and made their way down the Upper Columbia River. Agueda Pacheco-flores, The Seattle Times, "Appeals court sides with Colville Tribe against Canadian mining company for polluting Upper Columbia River," 25 Sep. 2018 Indeed, cadmium’s use in contemporary jewelry may be linked to manufacturers shying away from working with lead. Eliza Brooke, Vox, "Why cadmium, a metal that can cause kidney and bone damage, is still used in jewelry," 12 Oct. 2018 My Princeton painting classes took me to museums, to Philip Guston’s cadmium red, ivory black, and titanium white cigar-smoking Klansmen and John Currin’s skinny, huge breasted naked white women the color of supermarket peach flesh. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "Old In Art School," 20 June 2018 There is mercury in liquid-crystal display screens, lead in cathode-ray tubes, cadmium in semiconductors and batteries, and ozone layer-destroying chlorofluorocarbons in old refrigerators, for example. Peter Ford, The Christian Science Monitor, "'E-waste': Getting grip on a growing global problem," 9 July 2018 Police found quicksilver, lead and cadmium in the man's home. Darko Janjevic, USA TODAY, "German man suspected of killing 21 co-workers by poisoning their food," 29 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cadmium.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cadmium

1818, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cadmium

New Latin, from Latin cadmia zinc oxide, from Greek kadmeia, literally, Theban (earth), from feminine of kadmeios Theban, from Kadmos; from the occurrence of its ores together with zinc oxide

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Statistics for cadmium

Last Updated

17 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for cadmium

The first known use of cadmium was in 1818

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English Language Learners Definition of cadmium

: a bluish-white metal that is used especially in protective coatings and in batteries


cad·​mi·​um | \ ˈkad-mē-əm \

Medical Definition of cadmium 

: a bluish white malleable ductile toxic bivalent metallic element used especially in protective platings and in bearing metals symbol Cd — see Chemical Elements Table

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Spanish Central: Translation of cadmium

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Britannica English: Translation of cadmium for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about cadmium

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