Blue pigment discovered at OSU inspires Crayola's new crayon col - KPTV - FOX 12

Blue pigment discovered at OSU inspires Crayola's new crayon color

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Image: Oregon State University/Crayola Image: Oregon State University/Crayola

A blue pigment discovered in a laboratory at Oregon State University is the inspiration for Crayola's new crayon color.

Crayola announced Friday that a color inspired by the YInMn pigment will replace the retired yellow crayon known as dandelion.

Crayola announced the end of the dandelion crayon in March.

The YInMn pigment was developed by OSU chemistry professor Mas Subramanian. It combines the elements of yttrium, indium, manganese and oxygen.

Subramanian called it "truly an honor" to have his discovery lead to a new crayon color.

“Blue is associated with open spaces, freedom, intuition, imagination, expansiveness, inspiration and sensitivity,” he said. “Blue also represents meanings of depth, trust, loyalty, sincerity, wisdom, confidence, stability, faith, heaven and intelligence. We could not imagine a better partner than Crayola, a brand synonymous with color and creativity, to help us share this discovery with the world.”

YInMn blue was discovered by accident in 2009 when Subramanian and his team were experimenting with new materials that could be used in electronics applications.

The researchers mixed manganese oxide – which is black in color – with other chemicals and heated them in a furnace to nearly 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit. One of their samples turned out to be a vivid blue.

The new crayon still needs a name. Crayola is asking for the public's help naming it via an online contest.  

Those who submit name ideas will be entered for a chance to win one of four weekly prizes. The new name will be announced in early September.

The new crayon will be appearing in Crayola boxes starting in late 2017.

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