The present volume describes the general properties of the thorium atom and ions, the thermodynamics of its compounds and solutions, the behavior of solutions and solid com pounds under the influence of its own radiation as well as an external radiation field, and spectroscopic data in great detail. The different chapters are of special interest to scientists who work in these fields, and also in the corresponding fields of other elements. In some special fields there exists a detailed knowledge of this radioelement whereas in other fields, such as M6Bbauer spectra, lower oxidation states, or radiation stability, there are large gaps. Due to the fact that the significance 23 of thorium as a breeder fuel ( 2"fh to be converted to fissile 233U after thermal neutron capture) has decreased within the last decade, the behavior of thorium is not as yet so thoroughly investigated as the heavier radioactive element uranium. Many of these data, however, are not only of academic interest, e.g., the knowledge of atomic spectra is needed for some analytical methods, especially in the trace concentration region. Due to the noble gaS-like electronic configuration of the tetravalent ion, there are no absorption bands in the visible region so that in general spectra and data are very scarce. This volume is a very detailed and critically reviewed compilation, written by experts from the Federal Republic of Germany, Belgium, and the United States.