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Why is argon used in light bulbs

Why is argon used in light bulbs

Argon, with a chemical symbol Ar”, is categorized as a noble gas on the periodic table. Its atomic number is 18 and is the third most abounding gas that is present in the Earth’s atmosphere. It can be industrially produced through a process called fractional distillation of liquid air”. It is due to its abundance, cheap, and easy production that made it useful in the manufacturing of light bulbs and other applications that needs inert” atmosphere.

Argon is a distinctive gaseous element as it is characterized as an inert gas, or a kind of non-reactive gas. It is because of this characteristic that argon got its name which means lazy” or inactive one” in Greek language. Argon is commonly applied in light bulbs to protect the hot filament inside the lighting from other atmospheric gases without affecting other substances inside due to its inert” characteristic. If other atmospheric gas in used in light bulbs such as oxygen, it will only oxidize the filament and quickly burn it up.

Before, xenon gas and krypton were used in incandescent lighting. But the said gases were rare and expensive to produce which paved way in the use of argon in the production of light bulbs. Aside from being cheap and easily produced, argon is then applied in the creation of light bulbs because it does not create any reaction with the filament inside thus burning it slowly and extending the life of the bulb for a longer period of time.

Fluorescent lighting works the same way as incandescent that needs a sealed setting in order to produce light. A small amount of mercury and argon are enclosed inside the fluorescent bulb that creates light energy when the bulb is affixed in lighting fixtures and energized by electricity.

Argon is also used in neon lighting, thermal windows, metallurgy and welding, clothing, medical procedures, and even in food.


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