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Topic: Structure of helium  (Read 6756 times)

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Corvettaholic

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Structure of helium
« on: April 26, 2004, 06:55:13 PM »
This is what I know about helium, its a noble gas, fairly tiny, and exists as He2. Correct so far? Got a couple questions about it:

1) Does it have a double bond or a triple bond, and why? I thought its inert and wants to stay really simple.

2) I've heard He3 exists, whats up with that stuff? And why wouldn't it want to go back to a more simple form of He2?

3) For those with bio-chemistry knowledge, why does it make your voice high-pitched when you inhale it? (come on, everyone did it as a kid)

Offline Mitch

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Re:Structure of helium
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2004, 08:23:45 PM »
A)It exists as He not He2. You might be confusing He2 with He2.

1) No bonds

2) See part A and then ask again.

3) Helium will fly pass your vocal cords much faster then O2/N2 thats why your voice gets "higher". If you huff some xenon your voice will get deeper.
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Offline hmx9123

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Re:Structure of helium
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2004, 09:09:57 PM »
To add to Mitch's #3: Helium is less dense than air (nitrogen/oxygen mix mostly), which accounts for the sound.  Xenon and SF6 make your voice lower because they have a greater density than air.

I think Mitch is right, too, you're probably referring to the different isotopes of helium, 42He and 32He.  These numbers are actually written directly above and below one another, but we can't do that here on the forums.  The top number is the mass number and the bottom is the # of protons in the atom in question.  This is standard notation for nuclear chemistry.

Offline Scratch-

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Re:Structure of helium
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2004, 11:05:23 AM »
Then if you stood on your head while talking with helium would your voice be deeper?  ;D
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Offline Mitch

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Re:Structure of helium
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2004, 12:57:25 PM »
unless you can change the density of a substance by rotating yourself upsidedown, then yes.
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