Properties and Uses of Hydrogen

Properties of Hydrogen

Hydrogen has the following physical and chemical properties.

  • Hydrogen is a gas at the room temperature.
  • Hydrogen is tasteless, odorless and colorless gas.
  • It is the lightest gas known in the world.
  • Hydrogen is not soluble in the water.
  • Hydrogen gas is highly inflammable and it burns with the blue flame and forms the water.
  • For hydrogen, the liquification temperature is -252oC.
  • The bonding energy of H-H is 432 KJ/Mole.
  • Hydrogen has an electronegativity of 2.1.
  • Hydrogen gas has ionization potential of 13.54 electron volt.
  • The density of hydrogen is the lowest among all the gasses.
  • Hydrogen is burned in the air but its burning does not support the combustion of other things.
  • Hydrogen is a strong reducing agent and it reduces the oxides of lead, copper, zinc, and iron to their respective metals. While hydrogen is oxidized for water formation when the metal oxides are heated in the stream of the hydrogen.
  • Hydrogen combines with certain metals and forms the hydrides which are electrovalent compounds.


Uses of Hydrogen

Many scientists are of the view that hydrogen is a safe fuel for the future. Hydrogen is generated from the water and after oxidation, it is returned to the water. The use of hydrogen-powered fuel cells is increasingly demonstrated as the pollution-free source of energy and now it is being used in some cars and busses. Hydrogen is widely used in the chemical industry for the manufacturing of ammonia by using the Haber process and this ammonia is used as fertilizer in the agriculture sector. Hydrogen is also used during the oil refining processes to remove Sulphur from the fuels. Hydrogen is used in large quantities for hydrogenation of oils to make the fats for example in the production of margarine. Hydrogen is also used in the glass industry as a protective atmosphere to make the flat sheets of glass. Hydrogen is used as a flushing agent in the electronics industry during the manufacturing of silicon chips. Due to the low density of hydrogen, it is a natural choice for its practical uses like filling the airships and the balloons. However, hydrogen vigorously reacts with the oxygen and now it has the future to fill the airships as Hindenburg airship caught fire due to filling with hydrogen.

Hydrogen has many common uses in daily life. Hydrogen gas is used as fuel. Hydrogen is used in the preparation of the vegetable ghee. Hydrogen is also used as fuel for the rockets. It is used in the preparation of methanol and ammonia. For the preparation of oxy-hydrogen flame, hydrogen is used. This flame produces a high temperature so it is used in the welding process. Hydrogen is used for filling the weather balloons. Tungsten filament is prepared by using the hydrogen. Hydrogen is used for the preparation of low temperature in the liquid state. Hydrogen has an important biological role as well. It is present in all the molecules of living things as it is an important constituent of water. Hydrogen does not have any particular active role by itself. It always remains bonded to the oxygen and carbon atoms.


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