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General Info
Atomic Symbol Atomic symbol::Ne
Atomic Number Atomic number::10
Atomic Weight Atomic weight::20.1797 g/mol
Chemical series Noble Gas
Group, Period, Block 18, 2, p
Electron configuration 1s2 2s2 2p6
Electrons per shell 2, 8
Electron shell Neon.png
CAS number CAS number::7440-01-9
Physical properties
Phase gas
Density Density::0000.9002 g/ml
Melting point Melting point::24.56 K
Boiling point Boiling point::27.07
Isotopes of Neon
iso NA half-life DT DE (MeV) DP
20Ne 90.48% 20Ne is stable with 10 neutrons.
21Ne 0.27% 21Ne is stable with 11 neutrons.
22Ne 9.25% 22Ne> is stable with 12 neutrons.
All properties are for STP unless otherwise stated.

Neon is a chemical element known by the chemical symbol "Ne". the tenth element found in the Periodic Table of the Elements. Neon is in a group called the noble gases which includes helium, argon, krypton, xenon, radon, and ununoctium. [1] Neon is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless noble gas that has a full outer valence electron shell. [2] Neon was founded in 1898 by William Ramsay and Morris Travers. [3] [4] [5] Because neon is a gas, it can be found in the atmosphere. [6] Neon must be separated from the air in order to be used. [7]


Neon has ten electrons, ten protons, and ten neutrons. Neon resides in the noble gases because it has a full valence electron shell, which means that it has eight electrons in its outer layer. Neon’s atomic number is 10, and its atomic mass is 20.18. [1] [8]Neon is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that is found in the atmosphere. [2]There are three stable isotopes of neon. Neon's has an oxidation number of 0 because it is a noble gas. [4]The three known stable isotopes of neon are neon-20, neon-21, and neon-22. [7]Neon is not known to be toxic at this time, and poses no health threats to society. [3][7] Neon has eight valence electrons in its outer shell, which is why it is known as an inert gas. However, under certain circumstances, Neon will mix with other noble gases, hydrogen, and fluorine. These compounds only form under certain, exact circumstances.[5] [9] [10] [11]Neon discharges a reddish-orange light in a vacuum discharge tube. [3]Neon’s discharge is the greatest of all the rare gases, and is one of the reasons why it is used to make signs. [5]Neon has an atomic weight of 20.1797 g/mol. The boiling point of neon is 24.56 K, and its boiling point is 27.07 K. Neon is in its gaseous state at room temperature. [4]


Neon is somewhat rare on earth, but very abundant in the universe. In fact, it is the fifth most abundant element in the universe. [3]Neon is a gas that is found naturally in the atmosphere.[6] Neon was originally found by isolating elements from liquid air. The elements condensed because of the low temperature of the liquid air. [10]Neon exists in air at 18.2 parts per million. Neon can be obtained today from the air through a method called functional distillation. The gaseous air must first be turned into a liquid. Once the liquid air begins to heat up, the gases begin to separate from the liquid. The gas that separates from the solid at -245.92°C is neon.[7]


Neon in a glass tube.
A neon sign.

Neon is used in a variety of different ways. Neon is used in lighting signs, the production of lasers, and wave meter tubes. [9] [7] Neon has many other things hat it is used for, but these are some of the most common and important uses. The most common and widely known facts about neon are its role in lighting signs. Neon signs are actually not very complicated. Neon signs begin with a glass tube filled with the gaseous neon. On each end of the glass tube, there are metal electrodes which the electric current will run through. One of the metal electrodes has a positive charge while the other end is hooked up to a negative charge, creating a current in the glass tube. The neon gas acts as a connector between the positive and negative side. The electrical current causes the electrons to move faster, which then emits a photon which is light. [12]George Claude invented the neon lamp and patented his design in 1915. Once James Claude invented the neon bulb, he began to sell his product to the general public. However, he sold few neon bulbs, and needed a new outlet so he could profit from his invention. He modified his invention, and people began to use Claude’s invention as an advertising sign because of its glow. Neon signs were first introduced to the United States in 1923. The Packard motor company of California purchased two neon signs to advertise their cars. Neon signs became very popular in the United States from that point forward.[13][14]Another use for neon that is not as well known is as a refrigerant. Liquid neon has way more refrigerating capacity that liquid helium and liquid hydrogen. [4]Neon-helium lasers are very important for several different reasons. These lasers are very effective and can be used in the medical field and some microscopes. There are several qualities that make neon-helium lasers a great option for these fields. Neon-helium lasers are fairly inexpensive compared to other lasers, can be used for long periods of time, and have a better beam quality than other lasers. The only drawback to neon-helium lasers are that they have a low output power which limits their use in some medical treatments.[15]Neon is expensive compared to some of the other noble gases, costing almost fifty times more than helium. Because of the high cost of neon, neon is typically used only when it is necessary. There are several other ways that neon is used. Neon is used as the bulb in high voltage indicators to easily see which electrode is glowing when the current flows through it. Another use of neon is in lightning arresters. Lightning can severely damage electrical systems if it comes in contact with them. In a lightning arrester, neon is kept in a glass tube. When the lighting hits a lightning arrester, the neon tube prevents the lightning from the electrical systems, and helps the electrical current to be conducted into the ground.[16]


William Ramsay

Neon was discovered in London, England by a Scottish chemist named William Ramsay, and an English chemist named Morris M. Travers in 1898. [3] [4] [5]Ramsay and Travers had been using the new method of spectroscopy. Spectroscopy is analyzing the light spectrum given off by each element. Each element gives off its own spectrum, which helped chemists discover new elements. Ramsay and Travers were working to isolate all of the elements from air. Once they had isolated the known elements of oxygen, nitrogen, and argon, a small amount of an unknown gas remained. Ramsay and Travers decided to use spectroscopy to try to identify the element. Once they heated up the element, they did not recognize the line spectrum given off by the new element, and they knew that they had discovered a new element.[7]They named the new element neon from the Greek word neos meaning new. [4]Ramsay would later receive the Nobel prize in chemistry in 1904 for his achievements in finding new elements. [2]


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  10. 10.0 10.1 Wamback, Steven J. Helium. “The chemical properties of neon”. Web. May 2, 2007 (updated).
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  12. Baum, Josh. eHow. “How Do Neon Lights Work?”. Web. November 2012 (accessed).
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  15. Tutor Serge. “The Helium-Neon Laser”. Web. November 19, 2008. Author Unknown.
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