Warning note, Berylium is very poisonous!

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Your cell phone probably has a beryllium copper alloy in it.

Let's be more specific -- the fumes from berylium, when it is welded, are toxic, beryllium particles if lodged in the lungs, can lead to chronic beryllium disease and lung cancer. A cut from a sharp piece of beryllium is no more dangerous than a cut from a piece of aluminum (so you probably should get a tetanus shot anyway.)

Here's some health information:
http://www.brushwellman.com/EHS/Safety Facts/SF200.pdf
Hi Jackinnj,

thanks for your input, maybe it's not as dangerous as I thought, however I think precaution is in place anyhow since big manufacturers of semiconductors also warns about the Beryllium.

Beryllium-copper is however an alloy which is more stable and is not as large a risk as pure beryllium if I remember right, but anyhow, and if it's inside a cellphone it's ok, it's the direct exposure that should be avoided I think.
And as I mentioned earlier RF components use to contain Beryllium INSIDE the package, and as a mobilephone is an RF product it may very well contain such components.

If Beryllium would not be more poisonous than Aluminum, it would not be banned in F1, but this is probably due to the heat exposure inside a combustion engine creating fumes.

As an counterweight to your link which make Beryllium look like it's like "any other metall" I would add this text:


Beryllium and its salts are toxic and should be handled with the greatest of care. Beryllium and its compounds should not be tasted to verify the sweetish nature of beryllium (as did early experimenters). The metal, its alloys, and its salts can be handled if certain work codes are observed, but no attempt should be made to work with beryllium before becoming familiar with proper safeguards."

Sources: CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics and the American Chemical Society.

And here's more food for thought:

"The disease can be caused by virtually any form of beryllium dust or fumes, ranging from beryllium alloys (for example, aluminum-, copper-, nickel-, and magnesium-beryllium) and beryllia ceramics to pure metal. Once inhaled, beryllium is like a time bomb in the body. In some people, disease develops within a few months, or it can take 40 years. Workers who breathed beryllium dust even for a few days carry a lifelong risk of developing sensitization to the metal and disease. In our clinics at National Jewish, we now care for hundreds of patients who have developed this serious, chronic allergic reaction to beryllium.

Lee S.

Professor of medicine and head of the Division of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences, National Jewish Medical & Research Center, and professor of medicine and preventive medicine/biometrics,University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver.

With this in mind I think it would be dangerous to just only use tweeters made of beryllium when playing, especially loud, get's hot and are at same time vibrating.
I'm not the person to answer that but it sounds doubtful.

Cheers Michael


Here's one example from Philips datasheet regarding an old classic RF tranny, BLY87:

PRODUCT SAFETY This device incorporates beryllium oxide, the dust of which is toxic. The device is entirely safe provided that the BeO disc is not damaged.
To get particles of metals in your lungs the maximum size can be approximately 5 microns, everything bigger then that will never make it in your resperatory system !
To get particles this minute will be quite difficult. So do not start to grind or saw it, otherwise it's perfectly safe (same as for asbestos and numerous other potentional carcinogenic materials)

Just use commen sense !
wes-ninja250 said:
If you think the MSDS for beryllium is scary, you should look up dihydrogen oxide or sodium chloride.

Did you read about the town that banned dihydrogen oxide? They don't screw around with that sort of thing. If only all communities were as concerned about health hazards, the world would be a safer and drier place.
I think we used some beryllium screwdrivers in the MRI lab I worked for back in highschool because it was non-magnetic.

I definitely remember a warning not to grind or sand them, but I think that handling was OK. Most likely they were sealed with something.

Regardless, in this case I think that it would be easier/cheaper just to not mess with the stuff. It doesn't seem to offer a definite advantage over the other (less toxic) options.

-Wes (BTW, how many Wes's are there on this forum? ... just wondering, it seems like a lot LOL)
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