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5 Unknown Applications of Argon That You Never Knew About

Argon gas, or chemically speaking, Ar, is one of the noble gases on the planet. While Ar is a noble gas, it is also a relatively abundant gas, just after Nitrogen and Oxygen.

Along with liquid argon, it finds many uses in the industry and factories in Australia. Melting alloys and metals and soldering, building light bulbs are just some of the few.

Through this article, you will understand and get to know some of the widest yet unknown uses of argon gas in Australia and across the world. Read on.

Radioisotope dating

Argon and K, or potassium, are used to date things as old as billions of years. Potassium generally has 21 neutrons and 19 protons. This makes it equivalent to Argon based on atomic mass– under 40- but with the varied distribution of neutrons and protons.

This potassium transforms to Argon when a beta-particle strikes the potassium atom, and a proton in the nucleus alters to a neutron. The process may appear simple but is pretty slow and only happens at a fixed rate over some time.

So, if a group of scientists is aiming to figure out the age of a rock, all they need to do is compare the ratios of argon gas to potassium in the sample of the rock to the ratio in a new sample. This ratio will increase over time, and you can find the age of the rock effectively.

Neon lights

As mentioned, Argon is a neon gas and is thus, used to create neon lights. The electrons on the outer shell excite and leap to further higher energy levels upon passing electricity through Argon.

Once this electron returns to the standard energy level, it will emit a photon. Argon is filled in incandescent light bulbs to increase the bulb life and disallow tungsten filament evaporation.

3D printing

The functioning of a 3D printer requires an inert environment. The argon-enabled inert atmosphere has a low oxygen concentration and reduces oxidisation.

This makes argon the best as it helps maintain the component’s purity.

Heat treatment

Heat treatment involves heating the metal without it reaching the molten state. After that, this molten metal is cooled to have some specific mechanical qualities.

Liquid argon also builds a noble environment, and the dew point provided is below -75 degrees Fahrenheit, clubbed with oxygen lower than 20 ppm.

Additionally, heating treatments where Argon can find use are brazing, sintering, and annealing.

Preservative

Have you seen the European food additive code E938?

If yes, that’s argon in your packaged stuff.

Argon is regularly used as a constituent to increase the shelf life of the contents. It displaces moisture-containing air and oxygen in the packing material.

It also slows down or stops the processes of hydrolysis, airborne oxidation, and similar chemical reactions that break compounds in the goods. It is also put to use as fuel in aerosol cans.

Lastly, you will also find Argon employed in paint, polyurethane, and varnish products. Here, the gas displaces air to allow the container to store the product appropriately. It is also used in Australia’s food and beverage industry in Australia such as in wine, chips, etc.

While argon gas and liquid argon find many different uses in several industries, it is still dangerous. Being inert doesn’t steer away from the dangers it brings with itself. It is best to use the gas in an inspected manner and with the help of a reputable expert.

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