Lead has been known since ancient time. Its name derives from the Greek word "protos" which means "first". Its symbol name derives from the Latin word "plumbum" which mean "lead".
Lead's melting point is at 327.5 C (600.65 K, 621.5 F) and its boiling point is at 1740.0 C (2013.15 K, 3164.0 F).
Lead is a soft, malleable, and very heavy metal.
Lead has a silvery-white-chrome color when melted, blue-white when it is freshly cut, and gray when exposed to air.
Lead is the heaviest nonradioactive element.
Lead is a poor electrical conductor.
Lead has a high corrosion resistance.
Lead reacts easily with organic chemicals.
Lead in powder form burns with a blue-white flame.
Lead has four stable isotopes: 204-Pb, 206-Pb, 207-Pb, and 208-Pb.
Lead is commonly found in ores with copper, zinc, and silver (mineral galena, cerussite, anglesite, etc).
Lead's annual production is about 10 million tones (a half from recycled lead).
Lead's main producers are Australia, China, the USA, and several others.
Lead is vastly used in car lead-acid batteries (more than a half of USA lead production is used in car batteries).
Lead is used in ammunition and shotgun pellets production, in ballast keel of sailboats, and in weight belts in scuba diving.
Lead is used as electrodes in electrolysis process and in high voltage cables.
Lead is used as shielding for radiation (in x-ray rooms) and as a coolant for lead cooled fast reactors).
Lead is also used in the walls and ceilings of sound proof rooms.
Lead has a significant importance with many uses in construction industry.
Lead is used as a coloring element in ceramic industry and PVC production.
Glass industry uses lead (lead oxide) to change the properties of glass.
Other lead applications include: in oil-based paints (discontinued in many countries), additive for aviation fuel, in candles for longer and even burn, in semiconductors for photo-voltaic cells, in infrared detectors, and few other niche applications.
Lead is poisonous for humans, particularly for nervous system.