Uses of Helium Kian Petroleum

Facts About Helium

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What is Helium

Helium is the second element on the periodic table. It is a colourless an odourless gas yet it has a number of uses, some of which may surprise you! Helium gas is literally ‘lighter-than-air’ due to its extremely low density, which explains its most well-known use;  decorative balloons

Helium’s presence on earth was confirmed in 1895, however it was first discovered in 1868 when French astronomer, Pierre Janssen, witnessed an unknown gas during a solar eclipse. This is where the name ‘Helium’ originated, as it was named after the Greek God of the sun, Helios

Uses of Helium

Balloons : As already mentioned, the most common use for helium gas is for decorative balloons. However, this has since stretched to helium for weather balloons and airships. Fun fact: hydrogen was originally used to fill balloons but it is a highly reactive gas

Medical Applications : Helium gas can be used for respiratory ailments to treat conditions such as asthma and emphysema. Liquid helium also has medical purpose as it is used as a cooling medium for magnets and process use in MRI scanners and NMR spectrometers

Car/Vehicles : As helium is a very unreactive element, it is used to detect leaks in car air-conditioning systems. It is also used to inflate airbags as helium can diffuse quicker than most unreactive gases

Barcode Scanners : Supermarkets use helium for scanning barcodes at checkouts using helium-neon gas lasers. Helium can be used for lasers because even at high temperatures, the gas will not bond or react with other elements

Deep-Sea Diving : An artificial atmosphere is created using 20% oxygen and 80% helium to keep divers and others who work in pressurised conditions safe. The ability to consistently monitor this artificial atmosphere is something that Analox specialises in

Air , a mix of approximately 20% oxygen and 80% nitrogen, was initially used as diving gas however , nitrogen is generally a heavy gas and poses a number of risks to divers; a major risk being the ‘bends’. Helium is much safer to use as it is less soluble in the blood and reduces breathing resistance, deep-sea divers therefore use helium to dilute their oxygen