Like physics, chemistry has an innate romanticism that derives from “reality” rather than traditional aesthetic qualities. These brief chemistry facts and tidbits should pique or rekindle interest in this admirable branch of knowledge.
Ozone is created when lightning hits, which is why there is a distinctive scent following lightning storms
Lightning in nature produces ozone, a triple oxygen molecule that shields the stratosphere from UV radiation. As lightning hits, it splits airborne oxygen molecules into radicals, which then reform into ozone.
Ozone has a strong aroma that is frequently compared to chlorine. This explains why you smell “clean” after a rainstorm.
Gold and copper are the only two metals that are not silver
Metal is an element with metallic bonding and the ability to easily produce positive ions (cations). These elements’ electrons are only weakly bound to their atoms and are easily transferable. Since electrons transport energy, metals make excellent electrical and thermal conductors.
All elecrons reflect all colors
The sun’s light is reflected as white because most metals’ electrons reflect all colors equally. Nevertheless, blue and violet light is absorbed by gold and copper, leaving only yellow light.
It is important to note that copper is the only metal that has intrinsic antibacterial properties.
As water freezes, it expands, unlike other materials.
Generally speaking, things shrink when they are cold. Due to the fact that temperature defines atomic vibration, the greater vibration causes the atom to occupy more space, leading to expansion. The one exception is water.
The ice takes up more space when it is frozen, albeit vibrating less. The peculiar structure of the water molecule is to blame for this.
As you recall from Chemistry 101, the water molecule has two hydrogen atoms at an angle for Mickey’s ears and an oxygen atom at the center for the face.
The water molecule has an open structure with a lot of room because of how oxygen and hydrogen connect to one another. Energy is released when water freezes because many extra-strong connections may be formed.
The glass flows extremely slowly but is essentially a liquid
It is much more difficult to describe glass because it is neither liquid nor solid. While they do so at such a slow rate that it is hardly noticeable, molecules nonetheless circulate in a glass. As a result, classifying glasses as neither a liquid nor a solid is sufficient.
Instead, glasses are categorized by chemists as amorphous solids, a state of matter that lies in between the first and second.
Moreover, there is a family of materials known as metal glass that, despite being incredibly light, are three times stronger than titanium and have the elastic modulus of bone.
Human body is almost 13.5 billion year old
As hydrogen atoms were generated at the beginning of the universe, each one in your body is most likely 13.5 billion years old. Hydrogen was the initial chemical element at the singularity that created the universe.
Hydrogen was fused into helium, which was subsequently fused into carbon, and so on, for all the others.
Hydrogen makes up around 73% of the mass of the cosmos that is observable. Everything else makes up only 2% of the mass, with helium making up around 25%.
Hydrogen and helium comprise less than 1% of the planet’s mass.
Helium that is superfluid defies gravity and scales walls
The “lambda point” for helium is the temperature of 2.17K (very near to absolute zero), where a dramatic change in liquid helium’s characteristics occurs.
A portion of the liquid transforms into a “superfluid,” a zero-viscosity fluid that can flow quickly through any pore in the device.
A pinch of salt will cause the water level in a glass of water to decrease
According to Achimedes’ law, the water level will quickly rise when you enter a bathtub. However, the total volume actually lowers by up to 2% when sodium chloride (salt) is added to a volume of water.
How come? As dissolved matter approaches, the solvent molecules become more organized, leading to a net decrease in apparent volume.
Both graphite and diamond are formed exclusively of carbon
Even though they are both formed of the same material, a crown gem may be distinguished from pencil lead by its shape. Because of the way that diamond and graphite are structured in space, they are allotropes of carbon.
Astatine is the least common naturally occurring element in the Earth’s crust
Astatine is a naturally occurring semi-metal created from the decay of uranium and thorium, and it is named from the Greek word ” instability. The element’s half-time in its most stable state is barely 8.1 hours.
Around 28 g of the element appears to be present throughout the crust. In order to use it, scientists would essentially have to create it from scratch.
The total amount of astatine produced to date is 0.00000005 grams.
Each gram of buckyballs costs $167 million
Antimatter buckyballs are the only item more costly in the world. Endohedral fullerenes were recently sold by an Oxford company for $167 million per gram.
Two hundred micrograms of pure endohedral fullerenes were sold for $33,400, according to Designer Carbon Materials, the only business in the world that makes this rare material.
DNA, commonly referred to as the “blueprint for life,” includes all the biological instructions that give each species its individuality. DNA is flame resistant. The life molecule is also remarkably resilient and is regarded as a natural flame suppressor.
Ten inches of snow are equivalent to one inch of rain
If the precipitation is all snow and the temperature is approximately 30 degrees Fahrenheit (0 degrees Celsius), one inch of liquid precipitation would equal ten inches of snowfall.
A rubber tire is made up of only one enormous polymerized molecule
While certain molecules might be large, most are still quite small. But not the vulcanized tire—everything is just one huge, ridiculous molecule!
The majority of the vulcanized tire is composed of long polymer chains that have been covalently crosslinked.
The very poisonous toxin sodium azide is contained in your car’s airbags
When there is a collision, the car’s sensors send out an electrical impulse that rapidly elevates the salts’ temperature in a split second. The airbag then quickly expands as a result of these breaking down into safe nitrogen gas.
Glenn Seaborg wrote his address with elements
Only renowned chemist Glenn Seaborg was able to write his address in chemical elements and atoms. His writing style was Sg, Lr, Bk, Cf, and Am.
It is Seaborgium (Sg), named after Seaborg himself; Lawrencium (Lr), for the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Berkelium (Bk), for the city of Berkeley, which is the location of UC Berkeley; Californium (Cf), for the state of California; and Americium (Am), for the United States.
At -190°C, the air turns liquid
The matter often manifests in one of the following four states: solid, liquid, gas, or plasma. The air we all breathe is a gas, but like all matter, it may alter its condition depending on the temperature and pressure it is exposed to.
Nitrogen, oxygen, and other gases are found in the air. By compressing and cooling the gas to extremely low temperatures, the gas can be turned into a liquid.
Iron oxide is the cause of Mars’s color
Mars is coated in a lot of iron oxide, the same substances that give blood and rust their distinctive colors, unlike Earth, which is frequently called the “blue marble” because it is primarily covered in seas and has a thick atmosphere, giving it a blue look.
Given this, it is hardly a surprise that the planet Mars was named after the Greek god of battle. Mars occasionally appears as a brilliant red star’.
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