What is Radon? Origin / Meaning of the name Radon
The name originates from the Latin word 'nitens' meaning shining.
What is Radon? Periodic Table Group and Classification of the Radon Element
Elements can be classified based on their physical states (States of Matter) e.g. gas, solid or liquid. This element is a gas. Radon is classified as an element in the 'Noble Gases' section which can be located in group 18 of the Periodic Table. The term 'Noble gas' derives from the Old High German word Edelgas from 'edili' meaning "noble". The name 'noble gases' is an allusion to the old, similarly termed 'Noble Metals'. The Noble Metals included Gold, Silver and Platinum which were so called due to their long association with the aristocracy.
Facts about the Discovery and History of the Radon Element
Radon was discovered by Friedrich Ernst Dorn in 1900. William Ramsay and Robert Whytlaw-Gray isolated it and gave it the name 'Niton' in 1910. It has been called Radon since 1923.
Sir William Ramsay (1852 - 1916)
Sir William Ramsay discovered the noble gases and received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1904 "in recognition of his services in the discovery of the inert gaseous elements in air". These elements included Argon, Krypton, neon and Xenon. Ramsay also isolated Helium which had been observed in the spectrum of the sun but had not been found on earth. In 1910 Ramsay also made and characterized radon.
What is Radon? Occurrence of the Radon Element
One molecule of radon in 1 x 1021 molecules of air
Found in some spring waters and hot springs
Obtained from decay of radium
Abundances of the element in different environments
% in Universe N/A
% in Sun N/A
% in Meteorites N/A
% in Earth's Crust N/A
% in Oceans 6×10-20%
% in Humans N/A
Associated Uses of Radon
Treatment of cancer - radiotherapy
Produce neutrons for research