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Rubidium metal is easily vaporized and has a convenient spectral absorption range, making it a frequent target for laser manipulation of atoms.Rubidium is not a known nutrient for any living organisms.Its desirable features for this application include the ready availability of inexpensive diode laser light at the relevant wavelength, and the moderate temperatures required to obtain substantial vapor pressures.The resonant element in atomic clocks utilizes the hyperfine structure of rubidium's energy levels, and rubidium is useful for high-precision timing.Therefore, the less-soluble rubidium hexachloroplatinate (Rb Bunsen and Kirchhoff began their first large-scale isolation of caesium and rubidium compounds with 44,000 litres (12,000 US gal) of mineral water, which yielded 7.3 grams of caesium chloride and 9.2 grams of rubidium chloride.
Although rubidium is more abundant in Earth's crust than caesium, the limited applications and the lack of a mineral rich in rubidium limits the production of rubidium compounds to 2 to 4 tonnes per year.It occurs naturally in the minerals leucite, pollucite, carnallite, and zinnwaldite, which contain as much as 1% rubidium oxide.Lepidolite contains between 0.3% and 3.5% rubidium, and is the commercial source of the element.Rubidium is a chemical element with symbol Rb and atomic number 37.
Rubidium is a soft, silvery-white metallic element of the alkali metal group, with a standard atomic weight of 85.4678.
Because rubidium substitutes for potassium in the crystallization of magma, the enrichment is far less effective than that of caesium.