Niobium is named for Niobe, daughter of Tantalus (Greek mythology) and the metal was first isolated in 1864. The element is found in niobite, niobite-tantalite, pyrochlore and euxenite. Extensive ore reserves are found in Canada, Brazil, Nigeria, Zaire and Russia. It is a shiny, white soft and ductile metal. It is used an an alloying agent in carbon and alloy steels and in nonferrous metals. Thousands of pounds of niobium have been used in advanced air frame systems such as were used in the Gemini space program.