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What are the chemical and physical properties of xenon, and the history regarding the...

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jahnea | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 30, 2009 at 8:07 AM via web

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What are the chemical and physical properties of xenon, and the history regarding the discovery?

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hi1954 | Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

Posted March 30, 2009 at 4:41 PM (Answer #1)

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Xenon is one of the "noble" gases, also known as "rare" or "inert" gases.  They are uncommon and highly unreactive.  The six inert gases make up about one oercent of Earth's atmosphere, and are thought to have been released into the air as a byproduct of the decay of radioactive elements. They are all monatomic in structure, which means a molecule consists of only one atom.  The outer layer of the atoms of all six inert gases consist of eight electrons, which is quite stable.  This impedes the loss or gain of electrons, which explains the nonreactivity of these gases.  Xenon's Atomic Number is 54, Atomic Weight is 131.30, and its symbol is Xe.

Xenon is the rarest, and was first discovered in 1898 by William Ramsey and Morris Travers.  It is odorless, colorless and tasteless, and is used in the manufacture of specialized lamps and tubes, such as vacuum tubes and bacterial lamps.  Xenon is found in nature in nine stable isotopes.  In 1962 Neil Bartlett created the first compound containing an inert gas, using xenon.

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revolution | College Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted February 23, 2010 at 10:59 PM (Answer #2)

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Xeon is situated at group 0 ( or group VIII) and it is one of th noble gases in the periodic table. It is one of the least reactive elements due to their full electronic structure of 8 valence electrons. It is also referred to as inert gases ( because they are unreactive) or rare gases (because less than 1% of the air is make up of it. It is a monoatomic element, is a colorless gas under room temperature, has low melting and boiling point and are insoluble in water. They do not react to form compounds because they have a full outer shells of electrons, and do not lose, gain or share any of its electrons to other elements. Its atomic number is 54 and nucleon number is 131, and is found in minute quantities. It is a heavy and odorless gas, and its chemical formula is known as Xe. The element was discovered by two people, William Ramsey and Morris Travers in 1898 in England, and found it in the evaporated content of liquid air. It can be used as anethesia and NMR spectroscopy in medical usage, and also be used in flash lamps.

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