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|Atomic Number:||54||Atomic Symbol:||Xe|
|Atomic Weight:||131.30||Electron Configuration:||2-8-18-18-8|
|Melting Point:||-119.9oC||Boiling Point:||-108.1oC|
|Description:||Colorless,Odorless,Tasteless noble gas.|
|Uses:||Used in filling flash lamps and other powerful lamps.Also used in
History(Gr. xenon, stranger) Discovered by Ramsay and Travers in 1898
in the residue left after evaporating liquid air components. Xenon is a member
of the so-called noble or "inert" gases.
OccurenceIt is present in the atmosphere to the extent of about one
part in twenty million. Xenon is present in the Martian atmosphere to the extent
of 0.08 ppm. the element is found in the gases evolved from certain mineral
springs, and is commercially obtained by extraction from liquid air.
PropertiesNatural xenon is composed of nine stable isotopes.
In addition to these, 20 unstable isotopes have been characterized.
Before 1962, it had generally been assumed that xenon and other noble gases
were unable to form compounds.
Evidence has been mounting in the past few years that xenon, as well as
other members of zero valance elements, do form compounds.
Among the "compounds" of xenon now reported are sodium perxenate, xenon
deuterate, xenon hydrate, difluoride, tetrafluoride, and hexafluoride. Xenon
trioxide, which is highly explosive, has been prepared.
More than 80 xenon compounds have been made with xenon chemically bonded to
fluorine and oxygen.
Some xenon compounds are colored.
Metallic xenon has been produced, using several hundred kilobars of
Xenon in a vacuum tube produces a beautiful blue glow when excited by an
UsesThe gas is used in making electron tubes, stoboscopic lamps, bactericidal
lamps, and lamps used to excite ruby lasers for generating coherent light.
Xenon is used in the nuclear energy field in bubble chambers, probes, and
other applications where a high molecular weight is of value.
The perxenates are used in analytical chemistry as oxidizing agents.
133Xe and 135Xe are produced by neutron irradiation in air cooled nuclear
133Xe has useful applications as a radioisotope.
AvailabilityThe element is available in sealed glass containers of gas
at standard pressure. Xenon is not toxic, but its compounds are highly toxic
because of their strong oxidizing characteristics.