Position of noble gas in periodic table, occurrence and uses

Position of noble gas in periodic table

Noble gases are also known as inert gases and do not take part in chemical reactions. They have their outermost shell complete and thus remain stable. They do not generally combine with other substances, nor are they affected by oxidising agents or by reducing agents. They are placed in the 18 or VIIIA group. Since, the outermost shell is complete, the valency is zero, hence VIIIA group is also referred to as zero group.

occurrence of noble gas

Noble gases always occur in free state because of their inert nature. All the noble gases, except radon are present in air in small amounts. The relative abundance of the noble gases in air is = 1%. Helium is present in natural gas up to the extent of 10 per cent. It is also present in small quantities in the minerals of radioactive elements. Water from certain springs also gives off gases, which are rich in helium and argon.

Uses of noble gas

Argon is used mainly to provide an inert atmosphere in high temperature metallurgical processes (arc welding of metals or alloys) and for filling electric bulbs. It is also used in the laboratory for handling substances that are air-sensitive.

Helium is a non-flammable and light gas. Hence, it is used in filling balloons for meteorological observations. It is also used in gas-cooled nuclear reactors. Liquid helium (boiling point 4.2K) finds use as cryogenic agent for carrying out various experiments at low temperatures. It is used to produce and sustain powerful super conducting magnets, which form essential part of modern NMR spectrometers and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) systems for clinical diagnosis.

Neon is used in discharge tubes and fluorescent bulbs for advertisement display purposes. There are no significant uses of xenon and krypton. They are used in light bulbs designed for special purposes.

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