Let's Get to Know the Elements: What is Hydrogen, Where is it Used? What are the Properties of Hydrogen?

what is hydrogen
what is hydrogen

Hydrogen, whose chemical symbol is H, is a substance that we use in many areas of our lives. There are both past researches and ongoing researches about hydrogen. Hydrogen is also known as the main substance of water. So what is hydrogen? Where to use? What are the properties of hydrogen? We have compiled all the detailed information about hydrogen for you. Here are the details!

The discovery of hydrogen dates back to ancient times. The element Hydrogen was discovered for the first time in the 1500s.

What is Hydrogen?

Hydrogen is a chemical element with symbol H and atomic number 1. It is a colorless, odorless, non-metallic, tasteless, highly flammable diatomic gas at standard temperature and pressure. With an atomic mass of 2 g/mol, it is the lightest of all the elements. It is located in the upper left corner of the periodic table. The name of hydrogen comes from the Greek word ὑδρογόνο (idrogono), meaning "to form water".

Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe, constituting 75% of the mass of the universe.[7] The majority of stars on the mainline consist of hydrogen, which is in the plasma state. Elemental hydrogen is rare on Earth. It can be produced industrially from hydrocarbons such as methane or, although expensive, from the electrolysis of water.

The most common natural isotope of hydrogen is protium without neutrons. Hydrogen can form compounds with many elements. It is also important because it is found in water and many organic molecules. It plays an important role in acid-base reactions between water-soluble molecules.

Since it is the only neutral molecule for which the Schrödinger equation can be solved analytically, the energy steps and bond properties of the hydrogen atom have played an important role in the development of quantum mechanics.

Hydrogen is a nonmetal. Its symbol is denoted by H. A diatomic gas that has no color, no odor and no temperature is called hydrogen. The element hydrogen is the lightest element among all the elements. In addition, the main energy source in the universe we live in is hydrogen. Therefore, the element hydrogen is very important. Although it is the lightest element among the elements, it is the element with the highest energy when compared to other elements.

At the same time, water contains the element hydrogen. That is, hydrogen combines with other elements to become liquid. The combustible property of the hydrogen element, which was discovered for the first time in the 1500s, was discovered later. In the 1700s, the hydrogen element was discovered for the first time as a combustible element.

Hydrogen was discovered in the 1500s, and its flammability was recognized in the 1700s.

The fuel of the heat given by the sun and other stars to the thermonuclear reaction is hydrogen and it is the main energy source of the universe. Hydrogen liquefies at -1 °C at 252,77 atm. The volume of liquid hydrogen is only 1/700th of its volume in the gaseous state. Hydrogen has the highest energy content per unit mass of all known fuels. 1 kg of hydrogen has the same energy as 2,1 kg of natural gas or 2,8 kg of oil. However, its volume per unit energy is high.

Hydrogen gas was first produced artificially by T. Von Hohenheim (also known as Paracelsus, 1493 – 1521) by mixing metals with strong acids. He did not realize that this flammable gas obtained as a result of this chemical reaction is a new element. In 1671, hydrogen was rediscovered by Robert Boyle as a result of the reaction of an iron bar and dilute acid solutions. In 1766, Henry Cavendish realized that hydrogen, which is obtained by the metal-acid reaction, burns in air and releases water when burned, is a separate element. Cavendish's encounter with hydrogen was at the time of his experiments with mercury and acids. Initially, he thought that hydrogen was one of the constituent units of mercury, that it emerged from the reaction of mercury with acid, yet he was able to realistically describe many important properties of hydrogen. In 1783, Antoine Lavoiser, repeating the findings of Laplace and Cavendish, named this gas, which produces water when burned, hydrogen.

Where Is Hydrogen Used?

Hydrogen gas is used in many fields today. The first known are the bombs made with the element hydrogen. The world's most powerful and most effective bomb is the hydrogen bomb. Therefore, we can say that it is first used in making bombs. Another area of ​​use is that it is used in the production of electrical energy. Hydrogen is needed when generating electrical energy.

Therefore, we can say that the hydrogen element is mostly preferred in this field. Another area where the hydrogen element is used is to obtain ammonia. While obtaining ammonia, the hydrogen element is needed again, and ammonia is obtained together with the hydrogen element.

Hydrogen is also used in the production of coal and gasoline. Therefore, the usage areas of hydrogen are of vital importance today. Solid oil production is also obtained from liquid oils with the hydrogen element.

What are the Properties of Hydrogen?

Hydrogen has both physical and chemical properties. The physical properties of hydrogen are as follows;

  • It is a colorless, odorless, tasteless and highly flammable substance.
  • It is the second most difficult gas to liquefy.
  • Its density is 0.09 moles.

The chemical properties of hydrogen are as follows;

  • Hydrogen is a nonmetallic element.
  • Hydrogen is formed from negatively and positively charged electrons.

Obtaining Hydrogen

Hydrogen gas was first produced artificially by T. Von Hohenheim (also known as Paracelsus, 1493 – 1521), by mixing strong acids with metals. He did not realize that this flammable gas obtained as a result of this chemical reaction is a new element. In 1671, hydrogen was rediscovered by Robert Boyle as a result of the reaction of an iron bar and dilute acid solutions.

In 1766, Henry Cavendish realized that hydrogen, which is obtained by the metal-acid reaction, burns in air and releases water when burned, is a separate element. Cavendish's encounter with hydrogen was at the time of his experiments with mercury and acids. Initially, he thought that hydrogen was one of the constituent units of mercury, that it emerged from the reaction of mercury with acid, yet he was able to realistically describe many important properties of hydrogen. In 1783, Antoine Lavoisier, repeating the findings of Laplace and Cavendish, named this gas, which produces water when burned, hydrogen. One of the first uses of hydrogen was in balloons and later in airships. For these purposes, hydrogen is obtained by the reaction of metallic iron and sulfuric acid. Hydrogen was used in the Hindenburg, which was destroyed in midair. Inert helium was used in balloons instead of hydrogen, which was later highly explosive.

Hydrogen Applications

Hydrogen is a non-toxic gas 14,4 times lighter than air. The fuel of the heat given by the sun and other stars through the thermonuclear reaction is hydrogen, and it is the main energy source of the universe.

  • It can be liquefied at -252,77 °C. The volume of liquid hydrogen is only 1/700th of its volume in the gaseous state.
  • Hydrogen has the highest energy content per unit mass of all known fuels (upper calorific value 140,9 MJ/kg, lower calorific value 120,7 MJ/kg). 1 kg of hydrogen has the same energy as 2,1 kg of natural gas or 2,8 kg of oil.
  • It is an average 1,33 times more efficient fuel than petroleum fuels. However, in order to be used as energy, it must be separated from the compounds in nature. Considering its production, it is not as profitable as ready-made fuels such as oil. However, an important difference of hydrogen from other fuels is that it can be produced from water with the help of solar or wind energy and can be converted back to water when used. This feature makes hydrogen a fuel that is open to everyone's production and use.

Hydrogen is not found in free form in nature, it exists in the form of compounds. The most well-known compound is water. In energy systems where hydrogen, which is clean and easy to use in all areas requiring heat and explosion energy, is used as fuel, the product thrown into the atmosphere is only water and/or water vapor. Apart from this, no gas and harmful chemicals (such as carbon monoxide or carbon dioxide) that pollute the environment are produced.

Atomic Structure of Hydrogen

The hydrogen atom, consisting of 1 proton and 1 electron, played an important role in the development of the atomic structure, thanks to its simple atomic structure, light absorption and emission spectrum. The simple structure of the hydrogen molecule and its corresponding H2+ cation gave important information about the nature of chemical bonds, this is the application of quantum mechanics of the hydrogen atom in the mid-1920s.

The Place of Hydrogen in the Universe

Hydrogen constitutes 75% of the universe by mass and 90% of atomic number, and with these ratios it is the most abundant element in the universe. This element is found in large quantities in stars, giant gas planets. Molecular hydrogen clouds are linked to the formation of stars. Hydrogen plays an important role in the generation of energy by the proton-proton nuclear fusion reaction of stars.

In the universe, hydrogen exists in atomic or plasma form. The plasma state is quite different from its atomic state. In this state, the hydrogen electron and proton are not bound, and it has very high electrical conductivity and light emission (the sun and other stars emit light). Charged particles are highly affected by electric and magnetic fields. For example, in the solar wind they interact with the earth's magnetosphere, giving rise to Birkeland currents and the aurora. In space, hydrogen exists in a neutral atomic state.

Under normal conditions, hydrogen exists as a biatomic gas (H2). Due to its lightness, it easily gets rid of the gravitational force compared to other heavier gases. For this reason, the rate of hydrogen gas in the earth's atmosphere is very low (1 ppm by volume). Although hydrogen atom and H2 molecule are abundant in space, it is very difficult to produce and purify them on Earth. Despite all this, hydrogen is the third most abundant element on earth. Hydrogen on earth is found in chemical compounds such as water and hydrocarbons. Hydrogen gas is produced by some bacteria and algae. Today, methane gas is an increasingly important hydrogen source.

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