12 Facts About Helium (He)

When most people think about Helium, they think about birthday balloons and funny sounding chipmunk voices. Sure, these might be the most popular uses but Helium also has many other interesting facts.

Here are 12 facts you may or may not have known about Helium:

1. Helium was first discovered during a solar eclipse in 1868 when a mysterious yellow spectral line was observed by French Astronomer Pierre Jannssen.

2. Helium is a colorless, odorless, tasteless, non-toxic, inert monatomic chemical element that heads the noble gas group in the periodic table

3. Helium has the lowest melting point amongst all the elements

Helium Balloons4. Helium Atomic number is 2

5. Helium's atomic weight is 4.00260

6. Helium makes up 0.0005% of all the air we breathe; thank goodness it's non-toxic!

7. 1/4 of the mass in the Universe is made up of Helium Atoms

8. A Helium atom has 2 protons in the nucleus as well as two electrons surrounding it.

9. Helium makes your voice sound like a chipmunk do to the fact that Helium is less dense than atmospheric air which changes the timbre of ones voice when inhaled.

10. Helium is non flammable making it much safer to use in airships and balloons instead of hydrogen.

11. Helium is often mixed with oxygen for deep sea diving to help reduce the effects of narcosis.

12.Helium is commonly used as a cooling agent in superconductors, cryogenics, inflating balloons as well as inflating airships