The chemical characteristics of radon is one of the most well – known radioactive compound that can be found naturally in the gaseous phase. Radon gas is initially detected by Ernest Rutherford, Robert B. Owens and Marie Curie. Marie Curie detected a radioactive compound in gaseous phase that is being released by radium while Robert B. Ownes and Ernest Rutherford detected a radioactive gas from thorium.
Radon gas is one of the compounds being produced by isotope radium-226 when it decayed naturally. It mostly found in rocks. Therefore, many people exposed to radon gas by inhaling air that has mixed with radon gas. Since radon gas is produced naturally on earth, people actually inhale small amount of radon gas.
But, does radon gas will give certain health effect for human? Here facts you should know.
The Properties of Radon Gas
At standard pressure and temperature, radon gas is colorless and odorless. Odor gas is the most dense gas ever known. Therefore, radon gas is the heaviest gas known. Radon compound will emit brilliant yellow phosphorescence at temperature less than its freezing point. The melting point of radon gas is -71 C while boiling point is at -61.7 C.
The Chemical Characteristics of Radon Gas
The atomic mass of radon gas is 222 g/mol. It has atomic number 86 and density for about 9.96 x 10-3 g/cm3. Radon gas is highly radioactive but chemically unreactive. The half – life of radon gas that was observed by Rutherford is 56 seconds while radon gas that was observed from radium has half – life for about 3.8 days. Without direct contact to radon gas, it will not cause a harmful effect to the body.
The Environmental Effects of Radon Gas
Most radon gas on earth surface can be found in several hot springs and spring water. However, in several places on earth, there is a detectable amount of radon found in the atmosphere. The amount of radon gas inside the building is respectively higher than the amount of radon gas outside the buildings.
The higher level of radon gas inside building happens because radon gas enters the building such as schools, houses, judi bola offices through the building cracks in the basements and foundations. Once radon gas enters the building, most of radon gas will be trapped there and only few of radon gas will go outside the building.
Sometimes, radon gas can also be found in the deep wells that are used for drinking water supplies. Radon gas in the deep wells will enter human body through drinking water. Some research found that high levels of radon gas inhaled through breathing will increase the probability of someone getting lung diseases.
However, radon gas has several advantages for medical treatment in the hospital. When radon gas decays, it generates alpha particles and radioactive polonium. The alpha particles decayed from radon gas is very useful to treat cancer.
However, radon compound for medical treatment is produced in the laboratory and packaged in sealed gold needles. Radon gas is also very beneficial for geological and hydrologic research. Radon can be used to track air masses.