Argon

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Argon, Ar, is another noble gas, meaing it is very non-reactive. Argon is mostly used because of its lack of reactivity, like for TIG welding where an inert atmosphere is needed, filling jars to store reactive materials, or even for incandesent light bulbs where an inert atmosphere is needed to keep the filiment from oxidizing to powder.

Argon can also be used similarly to neon lights, the resulting glow is a pleasent blue color. Often a drop of mercury is added, which adds strong ultraviolet rays, which can be used to activate phosphors on the inside of the glass tube and make virtually any color imaginable.

These are my samples!

Argon Fluorescent Lamp Starter, Lit

See below for info on what this is, except in this picture, it's lit up using high voltage from a camera flash. Don't mess with these unless you know what you're doing, 300 volts to the heart will most likely stop it and kill you.

Date added(year-month-day):20110724, sample number:16

Tags(Elements in sample):argon, vacuum

Argon Fluorescent Lamp Starter

This is the starter switch of a large fluorescent lamp, being that it blocks the path of current for awhile making filaments in the end of the fluorescent bulbs heat up, and once heated, turns on the high voltage between them. This heating is required because the heat helps ionize some of the gas in the bulbs, and once partially ionized, it is DRASTICALLY easier to start an arc in any gas. The switch itself is two electrodes that do NOT touch until heated, and said heating can be achieved by an arc through argon gas, giving it just enough time delay to heat up the fluorescent tube.

Date added(year-month-day):20110724, sample number:15

Tags(Elements in sample):argon, vacuum

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