Erbium metal is a member of the lanthanide group, and erbium is a silver-gray metal. It is always found along with other rare earths and is present in small amounts in the same minerals of basalt and xenotime; it has an abundance of 3.8 ppm in the earth's crust. It slowly loses its luster in the air, reacts slowly with water and dissolves in acid.
It is used as a pure metal but is used as an alloying element for titanium and is also used in the production of infrared absorbing glass. Erbium oxide is used in the ceramic industry to produce pink glazes.
Erbium has a high resistivity. As with other rare earth metals, performance depends on the presence of impurities. Naturally occurring erbium is a mixture of six stable isotopes.
Erbium metal is used in the fields of atomic energy industry and electronics industry, non-ferrous metal additives, high-tech alloy materials. Erbium oxide is used in the ceramic industry to produce a pink enamel. Erbium also has some applications in the nuclear industry and can also be used as an alloying component for other metals.