HE It is a colorless, odorless, tasteless, non-toxic, inert monatomic gas that heads the noble gas group in the periodic table. Helium Wikapedia
Helium is used for many purposes that require some of its unique properties, such as its low boiling point, low density, low solubility, high thermal conductivity, or inertness.
Helium is the second lightest element and is the second most abundant in the observable universe, being present in the universe in masses more than 12 times those of all the heavier elements combined. Helium's abundance is also similar to this in our own Sun and Jupiter.
On Earth, the lightness of helium has caused its evaporation from the gas and dust cloud from which the planet condensed, and it is thus relatively rare—0.00052% by volume in the atmosphere. What helium is present today has been mostly created by the natural radioactive decay of heavy radioactive elements (thorium and uranium), as the alpha particles that are emitted by such decays consist of helium-4 nuclei.
Most of the helium that is used comes from specific natural gas fields where it is in abundance, the largest concentration of helium trapped under the earths surface has been found here in Hugoton Natural Gas Area in Kansas The United States is the #1 producer of Helium in the World, and this has the highest concentration of helium because it is one of the largest natural gas fields in the USA.
The United State Military has the largest Helium reserve. National Helium Reserve
Because of its low density and incombustibility, helium is the gas of choice to fill airships. While hydrogen gas is approximately 7% more buoyant, helium has the advantage of being non-flammable (in addition to being fire retardant).
The Goodyear Blimp Seen at all major US sporting events such as the Superbowl this blimp provides aerial footage to TV stations during these events.
The Hindenburg was intended to be filled with Helium, but due to Germany lack of this element, it was filled with Hydrogen instead.
A Zeppelin is diffrent then a blimp because it maintains its outer shape with the help of a internal structure, which is like a framework of beams and struts, and the superpressure of the incombustible helium. The semi-rigid structure of the Zeppelin consists of three longerons of an aluminum framework and triangular struts made of carbon framework. The envelope material is fastened at the longerons and is made of a high-strength multilayer laminate. The engines are also mounted at the internal framework and have a big distance to the gondola. The internal structure of the Zeppelin permits an attachment of the engines, where they can operate efficiently.
Blimps, however, are so-called non-rigid airships without internal structure.
The German company Cargolifters hoped to use Zeppelins to carry large bulky carco such as oil rigs. But went bust. The Hanger for Cargolifters Zeppelins located in North East Germany, was transfromed into a tropical theme park called Tropical Island. Hanger to Swimming pool
And of course the effect Helium from birthday Ballons has on the human voice. The speed of sound in helium is nearly three times the speed of sound in air. Because the fundamental frequency of a gas-filled cavity is proportional to the speed of sound in the gas, when helium is inhaled there is a corresponding increase in the pitches of the resonant frequencies of the vocal tract.
Liquid helium is used to cool certain metals to the extremely low temperatures required for superconductivity, such as in superconducting magnets for magnetic resonance imaging. Liquid helium is used to cool the superconducting magnets in modern MRI scanners. The superconducter at CERN uses 96 metric tons of liquid helium to maintain the temperature at 1.9 kelvins
Once used as barcode scaners these lasers are best used in labratorys in optics demonstrations. Perhaps there is something we can film at Zeiss in Jena. They have laser scanning microscopes.
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