Periodic table of the elements with the common elements from the Earth's crust highlighted with white.
Click on image for full size
L.Gardiner/Windows to the Universe
Elements in the Earthís Crust
Even though there are 92 elements that are naturally found, only eight of them are common in the rocks that make up the Earthís outer layer, the crust. Together, these 8 elements make up more than 98% of the crust.
The 8 most common elements in Earthís crust (by mass):
46.6% Oxygen (O)
27.7% Silicon (Si)
8.1% Aluminum (Al)
5.0% Iron (Fe)
3.6% Calcium (Ca)
2.8% Sodium (Na)
2.6% Potassium (K)
2.1% Magnesium (Mg)
The picture on the left shows where these elements are located within the periodic table. Together, the elements oxygen and silicon make up most of the Earthís crust including silicate minerals such as quartz and feldspar.
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The Fall 2010 issue of The Earth Scientist
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