(Ytterby, village in Sweden) Marignac in 1878 discovered a new component, which hecalled ytterbia, in the earth then known as erbia. In 1907, Urbain separated ytterbia intotwo components, which he called neoytterbia and lutecia. The elements in these earths arenow known as ytterbium and lutetium, respectively. These elements are identical withaldebaranium and cassiopeium, discovered independently and at about the same time by vonWelsbach.
Ytterbium occurs along with other rare earths in a number of rare minerals. It iscommercially recovered principally from monazite sand, which contains about 0.03%.Ion-exchange and solvent extraction techniques developed in recent years have greatlysimplified the separation of the rare earths from one another.
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