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Helium

Kerry White

Properties of Helium
A gaseous element
Symbol: He
Atomic number: 2
Liquefies/vaporizes at ~ 4 K
Second least reactive Noble Gas
Second most abundant element in the Universe

Noble Gases
Helium is a Noble Gas; the elements to the far
right of the periodic table.
Noble Gases are nonreactive because their
outermost electron orbital is already full and at
its most stable.
Helium, along with Neon, are the only elements
that have never been observed forming a
compound with other elements.

Production and Uses of Helium


Helium is often extracted as a byproduct of
natural gas production and is often the product of
nuclear decay in the Earths crust
Helium is used largely in cryogenics involving
medical and scientific technology.
Helium has also been used in aeronautics and
rocketry as opposed to hydrogen due to its
nonflammable nature.

Dangerous of Helium
One of the few dangers of helium is overinhalation. Inhaling helium displaces oxygen
despite the helium itself being safe, this can lead
to suffocation if inhaled in excess.
Cryogenic helium can be dangerous and if not
handled properly can cause cold burns, also if
not kept in proper conditions rapid thermal
expansion can cause an explosion.