What chemicals are in helium

The helium story

The helium story begins in 1868. The French astronomer Pierre Jules Cesar Janssen and the English astronomer Sir Joseph Lockyer simultaneously discovered, independently of one another, a previously unknown element in the spectrum of the sun.

Lockyer suggested naming this new substance helium (after the Greek sun god Helios). However, the actual existence of this new element could not be proven until 1895 when the Scottish chemist Sir William Ramsey discovered helium in uranium minerals on Earth and later in the atmosphere.

In 1903, helium was found in natural gas, which has been the main source of helium ever since.

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Helium is colorless, odorless, non-toxic, non-corrosive and non-flammable.

At 4.2 K or −269 ° C, it has the lowest boiling point of all gases, which is why liquid helium is the coldest substance on earth.

It is therefore ideally suited as a low-temperature refrigerant in various innovative application areas such as superconductivity in magnetic resonance imaging (MRT), nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), particle physics and other low-temperature processes.

The special properties of gaseous helium are used in many industries and processes, for example in diving, as a lifting gas, for leak testing, in the automotive industry, in semiconductor production, in cutting and welding, in nanotechnology and for analysis purposes.

Liquid helium is delivered to the customer in special insulated ISO containers or Dewar containers, gaseous helium in bottles, in bottle bundles or in tube trailers.

Linde operates one of the world's largest helium plants in Otis (Kansas) and other plants around the world, including in Algeria, Qatar and Australia.

Our network with more than 50 helium filling plants in all important helium markets around the world represents the most reliable sales network in the industry.

physical and chemical properties

  • Symbol for helium: He

  • Ordinal number: 2

  • Molar mass: 4.0026 g / mol

  • Boiling point (at 1.013 bar): 4.22 K (−268.93 ° C)

  • Density at the boiling point (liquid): 125 kg / m3

  • Density at the boiling point (gaseous): 17 kg / m3

  • Density (1 bar, 15 ° C): 0.167 kg / m3

  • Heat of Evaporation: 0.084 KJ / mol

  • Thermal conductivity (1 bar, 15 ° C): 0.1482 W / (m * K)

  • Relative density, related to air (1 bar, 15 ° C): 0.138

  • critical temperature: 5.21 K (−267.94 ° C)

  • critical pressure: 2.29 bar

  • critical density: 69.7 kg / m3

  • Ionization energy: 24.587 eV

  • stable isotopes: He-4 99.999862%

  • stable isotopes: He-3 0.000138%