All About Argon

Argon is an inert gas that is both colorless and odorless and that is grouped in the Noble gases.  Argon received its name from the Greek word for “lazy,” because of its characteristic of having low levels of reactivity when it comes to forming compounds. This gas is most frequently utilized in welding and likewise found frequently in fluorescent lighting.

According to Chemicool, a large abundance of the argon on Earth is the isotope argon-40, which is generated from the radioactive decay of potassium-40. Argon in space, on the other hand, is generated from stars, that takes place when two hydrogen nuclei fuse with silicon-32, resulting in the isotope argon-36.

Argon, while inert, is not limited. In fact, argon comprises around 0.9 percent of the atmosphere on earth. According to calculations by Chemicool, this signifies that there exists around 65 million metric tons of argon in the atmosphere, and that quantity continues to increase as potassium-40 decays over time.

To detail a few of its characteristics, Argon (Ar) has the atomic number 18 and an atomic weight of 39.948. At room temperature, Argon is a gas.

Argon was first discovered in 1785 when English scientist Henry Cavendish identified a segment of air that seemed especially inert. Initially, Cavendish had difficulty determining what this air was. It was not until over one hundred years later in 1894 that two men, Lord Rayleigh and Scottish chemist William Ramsey managed to accurately classify and describe the gas, which subsequently earned them the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for this discovery. Additionally, examining argon’s elemental properties also led Ramsey to the discovery of helium, neon, krypton, and xenon.

Because of its inertness, argon is regularly utilized in industrial practices that require for a non-reactive atmosphere. In addition, argon serves as an effective insulator, thus it is frequently used to keep divers warm divers during deep-sea diving. Argon is likewise used in historical preservation and is pumped around significant documents such as the Magna Carta and a world map from 1507. Unlike oxygen and similar reactive elements, the argon effectively protects the paper and ink on these delicate documents.

In addition, there are many lesser-known employements for argon. For example, argon is used in neon lights that shine blue, since neon itself emanates an orange-red color. In addition, argon is frequently utilized in laser technology, including the lasers used in vision correction surgeries such as LASIK and PRK procedures. Argon has even been used to uncover contaminated groundwater in some locations in the United States. In this case, argon and other noble gases were injected into wells where they mixed with methane.

Currently, there is a significant amount of research being done on argon to discover further potential uses of the gas. For example, it is currently being looked at as a future alternative to the expensive gas xenon and its part in treatment of brain injuries. Additionally, a few experiments have found that argon could potentially be used to help brain injuries that have happened a result of oxygen deprivation or other traumatic incidents. A review published in the Medical Gas Research journal said that in a significant amount of instances, treating injuries with argon far reduced the death of brain cells. Researchers are still unsure about why argon impacts brain cells in this manner. Up to now, argon has been utilized in this research by either being directly mixed with cells in a culture dish or delivered combined with oxygen in a facemask for animal studies. As argon research continues, it is turning increasingly likely that human trials will start eventually. Nonetheless, there appear to be risks involved with argon treatment, and because of this more research must be done until this practice can be used.

Whether you’re searching for argon to be used in the medical industry or any other industry that utilizes specialty gases, PurityPlus has a huge selection of specialty gas products to meet your needs. We possess a large selection of specialty gases and specialty gas equipment, in addition to the resources and experts on hand to answer your questions and aid your needs. To learn more, read through our online catalog or reach out to us via email at peter.vanslyke@amwelding.com or at .