Magnesium is a chemical element with the symbol Mg and atomic number 12. It is a shiny gray solid which bears a close physical resemblance to the other five elements in the second column (group 2, or alkaline earth metals) of the periodic table: all group 2 elements have the same electron configuration in the outer electron shell and a similar crystal structure. Magnesium is the eleventh most abundant element by mass in the human body and is essential to all cells and some 300 enzymes. Magnesium ions interact with polyphosphate compounds such as ATP, DNA, and RNA. Hundreds of enzymes require magnesium ions to function. Magnesium compounds are used medicinally as common laxatives, antacids (e.g., milk of magnesia), and to stabilize abnormal nerve excitation or blood vessel spasm in such conditions as eclampsia.
Hydrogen is a chemical element with symbol H and atomic number 1. Classified as a nonmetal, hydrogen is a gas at room temperature. With a standard atomic weight of 1.008, hydrogen is the lightest element in the periodic table. Hydrogen is the most abundant chemical substance in the Universe, constituting roughly 75% of all baryonic mass. Hydrogen is estimated to make up more than 90% of all the atoms three quarters of the mass of the universe! This element is found in the stars, and plays an important part in powering the universe through both the proton-proton reaction and carbon-nitrogen cycle. Stellar hydrogen fusion processes release massive amounts of energy by combining hydrogens to form helium. Hydrogen is the primary component of Jupiter and the other gas giant planets. At some depth in the planet’s interior the pressure is so great that solid molecular hydrogen is converted to solid metallic hydrogen. In 1973, a group of Russian experimenters may have produced metallic hydrogen at a pressure of 2.8 Mbar. At the transition the density changed from 1.08 to 1.3 g/cm3. Earlier, in 1972, at Livermore, California, a group also reported on a similar experiment in which they observed a pressure-volume point centered at 2 Mbar. Predictions say that metallic hydrogen may be metastable; others have predicted it would be a superconductor at room temperature.