Dr. Ray's newfangled periodic table installed on campus


A large periodic table that includes samples of each of the 118 chemical elements was recently installed in the student lounge area on the west side of Ward Beecher Science Hall on the campus of Youngstown State University.

The tabular display cabinet of chemicals was given to YSU by an anonymous donor via arrangements made by Ray Beiersdorfer, distinguished professor of Environmental and Geological Sciences, months before his unexpected death in October.


Each of the elements on the table features an enclosed glass box containing samples of each element, including screws in the Zinc box, bright colored coins in the box for Aluminum, a CD disc in the Tellurium box and a glass goblet in the box for Lead.

The cabinet was designed and fabricated by master craftsman Marcos Polomo from Madrid, Spain. Palomo was on campus to install the cabinet, accompanied by Andrew Goodall, chemistry elements specialist with RGB Research Ltd. in London, which supplies the elements.


It takes Polomo and Goodall four days to assemble the cabinet, install the elements and test the electronics for the lighting. Palomo and Goodall say they have about 15 element table installations across the United States and also have displays in the following countries England, Canada and Australia.

Beiersdorfer, known on campus as Dr. Ray, died after suffering a heart attack on campus.

A month after his passing, YSU planted a scarlet oak tree on campus in his memory. In addition, a group of Beiersdorer’s friends have planted a native western oak tree on the Isle of Man, an island located in the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. Plans are also underway to dedicate the "Rockhopper Ray's Environmental Field Station" on the island in Dr. Ray's memory.