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It’s Elemental- The Natural Nobel Gasses September 14, 2017

Posted by makingyourdashcount in Elements.
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

*Read Disclaimer before continuing.

I am not a chemist. I am not a scientist in any way shape or form. Therefore, do not use this information for anything more than cocktail conversation, because I do not guarantee its veracity. This thread is also posted publicly, where I have had MANY chemist friends make corrections. If you want more information, that may be more correct, I would check there.


Neon (Ne), argon (Ar), krypton (Kr), xenon (Xe), and the radioactive radon (Rn) round out the rest of the noble gasses with yesterday’s Helium.

You noticed that I added in the word “Natural.” John won’t let me acknowledge synthetic Oganesson as a Noble gas, even though it’s been characterized that way by the people who do such things. It is a new element, just named in 2016. There is a debate whether Oganesson is even a gas and it’s crazily unstable unlike the natural nobles, but, whatever! He may have a point, but I refuse to acknowledge that.
To continue:

A Facebook comment yesterday about argon and wine got me thinking about how these gasses are used for preservation. Argon protects the filaments in standard light bulbs from burning out, as do Krypton and Xenon on occasion. It’s also used to protect historical documents, a fact that I have known my entire life. Oxygen and plain old air will destroy these things.

I did not grow up in a science family even though I married John, gave birth to walking brains and coached a competitive science team. MY high school science memories include going on a strike in biology because my partner, whom I will not name because she may read this post, would not dissect or put away our frog, EVER, EVER! Really!
(Poor Mr. Kersey ended up sending me to visit Mr. Lull!)

And Chemistry? I took summer school chemistry at Northfield Mount Hermon, with few distractions, because there was no way that I could ever pass it at my high school, distracted. Memories of this experience include running out of gas on a boat, in the middle of a lake, with my dreamy lab partner and making something purple. Yes, I barely passed the class.

BUT, I knew about INERT GASSES because archivists use them to protect important historical documents like the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. A shout out for this must go to my Mom, who stopped at every historical roadside marker on the way to wherever, including to the National Archives to see our founding documents.

Note: If you have never seen them, turn off your computer and go to the National Archives in D.C. NOW. It is THAT important. It’s all about argon!

Argon is so inert that it does not form true chemical compounds, which makes it perfect for protecting things from wine to historical documents and light bulbs.

It is also used as a protective atmosphere for growing silicon and germanium crystals, as well.

Sounds like next element possibilities!


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