Friday, 16 January 2015

Oxygen And its Characteristics


In its natural state Oxygen is an odorless, colorless, and tasteless gas. It is related to 16th group and 2nd period of periodic table, it’s a p block element [He] 2s22p4 with atomic number 8. 

The credit of discovering oxygen goes to three chemists: 

1) An Englishman, Joseph Priestley was 1st discoverer of oxygen, in 1774. He discovered it by focusing sun shine on to the mercuric oxide. 

2) A Swede, Carl Wilhelm Scheele founded oxygen in June 1771. Carl Wilhelm Scheele had written an article about his discovery but till 1777 it was not published.

3) A Frenchman, Antoine Lavoisier claimed that he had discovered oxygen gas.

Biological Role:

Oxygen firstly appeared on the Earth approximately 2 billion years ago in earth’s atmosphere, with the photosynthesis of blue & green algae. Oxygen gas is totally soluble in water, which makes the life in rivers, lakes & oceans possible.

Uses of Oxygen

The greatest official use of oxygen is in steel industries. Huge amount is also used in preparation of a huge number of chemicals along with nitric acid & hydrogen peroxide.

Oxygen is also used to make ethylene oxide, used as antifreeze & to make chloro ethane, and polyester, the manufacture to PVC. 
Oxygen is also used for cutting of metals and welding. A growth of use in the effluent from industry and the treatment of sewage.