Magnesium is the 12th element in the periodic table. Again I continue to find fascinating aspects of the elements. What truly surprised me was the structure of hemoglobin and chlorophyll. Their basic structures are identical except for Iron is in the center of hemoglobin and Magnesium is in the center of chlorophyll. The outer structures differ and this illustration notes the similarities. Magnesium is essential for human metabolic processes and is needed for over 300 biological processes.

hemoglobin and chlorophyll

Magnesium is reactive in water and will slowly release Hydrogen creating magnesium oxide. It is an alkaline earth metal. It will burn in air with a bright white light. It takes a while to get it started but after that it will burn in any kind of air including Nitrogen. Early flashbulbs used magnesium as the filament because of this bright, white light.

I have hesitated to put numbers into this blog as it can be rather daunting but I think for this one I’ll make an exception.

magnesium_burningThe lowest tones are in the ultraviolet and the highest in the infrared. The number is the wavelength in nanometers (10-09 meters so 285 nanometers is 285 trillionth of a meter – 0.000,000,285) This is just there for reference.

The tones from lowest to highest are

deep violet to deep blue

  • 285 – ultraviolet
  • 383 – deep violet
  • 448 – deep blue

green yellow red

  • 518 – green
  • 570 – yellow towards orange
  • 766 – red
  • 896 and 1034 – infrared


Here is the Magnesium scale.

Here I play all of the tones together.

And this is an improv with those tones.


AngstromNanometer (rounded)ColorHertzNoteHertz
3970.07397Near ultra-violet343.39F4249.23