Radon is a chemical element with the symbol Rn and atomic number 86. It is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless radioactive gas that is the heaviest noble gas. Radon: Periodic Table RN 86 is produced by the radioactive decay of radium, which is found in soil, rocks, and groundwater. In this article, we will explore the properties and uses of radon, as well as its potential risks to human health.
Physical Properties of Radon
Radon is a dense gas that is approximately nine times denser than air. It has a melting point of -71°C and a boiling point of -61.7°C. At room temperature, radon is a gas, and it is the only radioactive gas that is present in significant amounts in the Earth’s atmosphere.
Radon is a noble gas, which means that it is inert and does not react easily with other elements. It has a half-life of approximately 3.8 days, which means that it decays into other elements relatively quickly.
Uses of Radon
Despite its radioactive nature, radon has several uses in industry and medicine. Radon is used in radiation therapy to treat cancer, as it can be used to kill cancer cells. It is also used in industrial applications to detect leaks in pipes and to measure the thickness of materials.
Radon is also used in geology to study the structure and composition of rocks and minerals. By measuring the levels of radon gas in the soil and rock beneath the Earth’s surface, scientists can gain insights into the geological processes that have occurred over time.
Risks of Radon Exposure
Radon is a significant health risk to humans, as exposure to high levels of radon gas can lead to lung cancer. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking and is responsible for approximately 21,000 lung cancer deaths in the United States each year.
When radon gas is inhaled, it can decay inside the lungs, releasing alpha particles that can damage lung tissue and potentially lead to cancer. The risk of developing lung cancer from radon exposure depends on several factors, including the concentration of radon gas in the air, the duration of exposure, and whether the person is a smoker.
Radon Testing and Mitigation
Testing for radon levels in homes and buildings is important to identify if there are high levels of radon present. Radon testing can be done using short-term or long-term tests, which measure the amount of radon gas in the air. Short-term tests typically last between two and seven days, while long-term tests can last up to a year.
If high levels of radon are detected, mitigation techniques can be employed to reduce radon levels in the home. The most common method of radon mitigation is the installation of a radon mitigation system. This typically includes a fan and vent pipe that is installed beneath the home’s foundation. The fan pulls the radon gas from beneath the home and expels it outside. There it is dispersed harmlessly into the air.
Radon: Periodic Table RN 86 Mitigation Services
Test your home for Radon gas and find out if you need to take steps toward Radon Mitigation. Contact Radon Be Gone for professional Radon Mitigation, or order a Radon Test Kit to test your home for Radon.