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linux periodic tableGet a quick overview of the periodic table of elements, then zoom in on any element to find out more. It is a simple application to be sure, but one every science student who also uses Linux should check out.

We’ve shown you Ubuntu chemistry applications for students 3 Useful Ubuntu Apps for Chemistry Students 3 Useful Ubuntu Apps for Chemistry Students Read More , but we somehow missed this extremely simple and information-crammed version of the periodic table. That’s too bad. There is a lot of information to be found in gElemental, and it’s very logically arranged. There’s a reason it’s so highly rated in the Ubuntu Software Center, and I think it’s more than a competent replacement for a mere poster.

Whether you’re a student or just a science enthusiast, this is an application worth having around for offline reference. If you’re a real nerd, you can just explore it for fun in your spare time. Science is fun.

Using gElemental

If you’ve seen the periodic table of the elements before, the main screen of gElemental will be familiar to you. You’ll see the elements, all in their proper places.

linux periodic table

Hover over an element and you’ll see its name, the series it belongs in and its atomic number at the top. By default elements are color-coded according to series; you can find a legend by clicking the drop-down menu at the bottom of the window. You can change this color code in the menu to any of dozens of factors, which is certainly something a poster can’t do.


It’s a simple interface but what else do you want? If what you want are details about the various elements I highly recommend clicking one of them.

linux periodic table of elements

You’ll find a variety of information right away, from basic chemical stats to the year and place it was discovered. Click the “Physical or Atomic” tab in this window and you’ll see even more information:

linux periodic table of elements

Under physical, you’ll find the melting and boiling points, the heat of fusion and vaporization and more. The atomic tab contains even more information. Rest assured, there’s more data here than most posters you’ve seen.

Are you wondering where this information is all coming from? There’s a complete list of sources which you can find in the menu.

linux periodic table

You’re free to look through this and decide how trustworthy the information is, which is particularly nice if you need to cite something you find in this program.

Installing gElemental

Are you ready to install this program? Search your Linux distro’s repository for “gelemental” and you’ll have it in no time. Are you a Ubuntu user? Then simply click here to install gElemental, thanks to the magic of the Ubuntu Software Center.

If you can’t find gElemental in your repositories, head over to the gElemental homepage, where you’ll finds the source code to compile it yourself.


I love simple applications that do one thing very well. So far as I can tell, this program is a great way to quickly pull up information about the periodic table of the elements. Do you agree? As always, leave your thoughts in the comments below along with any alternative applications for the job.

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  1. Declan Lopez
    July 12, 2012 at 2:36 am

    This would have been useful two years ago when I had to learn the elements.

  2. periodic table with names
    February 27, 2012 at 1:00 am

    I think is a nice tool to work in linux

  3. Damian
    February 20, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    I use the Periodic Table from Socratica for android. Very similar in functionality and also has spoken pronunciation. Ideal for kids as they almost always have their phones with them.

  4. Helder
    February 6, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    I use Kalzium for this, didn't know there was a similar application for Gnome. I'll be checking this, as a Gnome user I prefer a Gnome (Gtk) application over a KDE one, given that the functionality is identical.

  5. Aiman Flow
    February 5, 2012 at 2:38 pm


  6. Car Accessories
    February 4, 2012 at 9:15 pm

    looks extremely complicated..