Hydrogen, with an atomic weight of 1.0079, is the lightest element known. It is estimated that 90% of the weight of the universe is composed of hydrogen. In its normal physical state, hydrogen is a colorless and odorless gas. Hydrogen has a melting point of - 434.45 °F and a boiling point of - 427.17 °F. The most common uses of hydrogen include: hydrogenation of fats and oils, as a nitrogen fixative, as a liquid for cryogenic purposes, and to reduce metallic ores.
Here is a brief summary of the isolation of hydrogen.
The isolation procedures of hydrogen depend on how much hydrogen needs to be isolated, and what equipment is available for the isolation procedures. For small isolation procedures of hydrogen gas in a laboratory, one part of calcium hydride is reacted with two parts of water; the end product is a small amount of hydrogen gas. Another isolation method that can be conducted in a laboratory uses the reaction between iron filings and dilute sulphuric acid; as with the previous formula the result is a small quantity of hydrogen gas.
Large amounts of hydrogen gas can be isolated for industrial uses through two main methods. The first method is a process in which coke is heated with steam to promote the water gas shift reactions. In the second reaction hydrocarbons, like methane, are heated with steam; the end products from both of these isolation methods are hydrogen gas and carbon monoxide. Additional hydrogen gas can be produced by passing the carbon monoxide and steam over iron oxide or cobalt oxide at a temperature of 732 °F.
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