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YInMn Blue (for yttrium, indium, manganese) is an inorganic blue pigment that was accidentally discovered by Professor Mas Subramanian and his then graduate student Andrew E. Smith at Oregon State University in 2009.[2][3]

YInMn Blue
YInMn Blue - cropped.jpg
YInMn Blue powdered pigment
About these coordinates     Color coordinates
Hex triplet #2626f7
sRGBB  (rgb) (45.82, 79.92, 143.51)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k) (68.07, 44.31, 0, 43.72)
HSV       (h, s, v) (219.06°, 68.07%, 56.28%)
Source [1][a]
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)
YInMn Blue
YMnO3 P63mmc Wiki Image.png
Crystal structure of YInMn Blue
Formula YIn1−xMnxO3
Crystal System Hexagonal
Crystal Symmetry P63cm
Unit Cell a = 6.24 Å; c = 12.05 Å
Color Light to dark blue


Discovery and developmentEdit

In 2008, Professor Mas Subramanian received a NSF grant to explore novel materials for electronics applications. Under this project, he was particularly interested in synthesizing multiferroics based on manganese oxides. He directed Andrew E. Smith (a graduate student then) to synthesize an oxide solid solution between YInO3 (a ferroelectric material) and YMnO3 (an antiferromagnetic material) at 1,093 °C (2,000 °F). The resulting compound was not an effective multiferroic; it was instead a vibrant blue material. Due to Prof. Subramanian's extensive experience at DuPont Co., he recognized the compound's potential use as a blue pigment and filed a patent disclosure covering the invention. After publishing their results, Shepherd Color Company contacted Prof. Subramanian for possible collaboration in commercialization efforts. The pigment is noteworthy for its vibrant, near-perfect blue color and unusually high NIR reflectance.[2][1] The color can be adjusted by varying the In/Mn ratio, but the bluest pigment, YIn0.8Mn0.2O3, has a color comparable to standard cobalt blue CoAl2O4 pigments.[1]

The new pigment is being commercialized by the Shepherd Color Company.[4] The shade will also be used on AMD's new Radeon Pro WX and Pro SSG professional GPUs for the energy efficiency that stems from its near-infrared reflecting property.[5] In June 2016, Australian company Derivan released the YIn Mn (known as Oregon Blue) as an experimental colour in their artist range (Matisse acrylics).[6] This experimental product was made using the Shepherd licensed pigment.

Properties and preparationEdit

YInMn Blue is chemically stable, does not fade, and is non-toxic. Moreover, infrared radiation is strongly reflected, which makes this pigment suitable for energy-saving cool coatings. It can be prepared by heating the oxides of the elements yttrium, indium, and manganese to a temperature of approximately 1,200 °C (2,200 °F).[7]


The pigment is far more durable than alternative blue pigments such as ultramarine or Prussian blue, retaining its vibrant color in oil and water. It is additionally safer than cobalt blue.[8]

American art supplies company Crayola replaced its retired Dandelion color with a new color based on the pigment. It held a contest for more pronounceable name ideas, and announced the new color, "Bluetiful", on 14 September 2017.[9][10][11] The new crayon color has been available since late 2017.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ The color coordinates were obtained from Smith et al. 2016 for the optimal blue pigment which has the composition YIn0.8Mn0.2O3. The CIELab coordinates (L=34.6, a=9.6, b=-38.9 in table 1) were converted using an online tool Archived 2017-01-08 at the Wayback Machine..


  1. ^ a b c Smith, Andrew E.; Comstock, Matthew C.; Subramanian, M. A. (2016-10-01). "Spectral properties of the UV absorbing and near-IR reflecting blue pigment, YIn1-xMnxO3". Dyes and Pigments. 133: 214–221. doi:10.1016/j.dyepig.2016.05.029. 
  2. ^ a b Smith, Andrew E.; Mizoguchi, Hiroshi; Delaney, Kris; Spaldin, Nicola A.; Sleight, Arthur W.; Subramanian, M. A. (2009-12-02). "Mn3+ in Trigonal Bipyramidal Coordination: A New Blue Chromophore". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 131 (47): 17084–17086. doi:10.1021/ja9080666. ISSN 0002-7863. PMID 19899792. 
  3. ^ A Chemist Accidentally Creates A New Blue. Then What? July 16, 2016 Gabriel Rosenberg "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2017-05-23. Retrieved 2017-05-22. ?
  4. ^ "Licensing agreement reached on brilliant new blue pigment discovered by happy accident | News and Research Communications | Oregon State University". Archived from the original on 2016-07-03. Retrieved 2016-07-02. 
  5. ^ "Radeon Pro WX Series and YInMn Blue". YouTube. AMD. 15 August 2016. Archived from the original on 11 June 2017. Retrieved 22 August 2016. 
  6. ^ "Product Profile: Yin Min Blue". YouTube. Archived from the original on 2017-11-05. 
  7. ^ YInMn blue Archived 2017-11-05 at the Wayback Machine. at ColourLex
  8. ^ Schonbrun, Zach. "The Quest for the Next Billion-Dollar Color". Retrieved 2018-04-20. 
  9. ^ "Crayola's newest crayon color is a shade of blue that was just discovered". USA TODAY. Archived from the original on 2017-05-06. Retrieved 2017-05-05. 
  10. ^ "Chemist finds new shade of blue by mistake (and Crayola is now making a crayon of it)". Metro. 16 May 2017. Archived from the original on 17 May 2017. 
  11. ^ News, A. B. C. (2017-09-14). "Crayola announces new color name: 'Bluetiful'". ABC News. Archived from the original on 2017-09-14. Retrieved 2017-09-14.