Learn the basics about the properties of oxygen.
Oxygen is a gas, it has no smell, colour, or taste; but without it, we as humans would not be able to inhabit planet Earth.
When cooled to a very low temperature, it will form a liquid and a solid which are both pale blue.
Oxygen makes up 21% of Earth’s atmosphere, It has taken many millions of years to makeup the composition of Today’s, atmosphere but we seem to now have the perfect balance,
Oxygen is used by the Human body in a process called Respiration.
When you breath in, the air that enters your body is held in the lungs. Some of the Oxygen you breath in is taken into the bloodstream and is transported to parts of the body where it is needed. Respiration takes place in the cells of your body. Oxygen combines with glucose ,building up carbon dioxide and water and releases energy enabling cells to function and our bodies to survive.
As you breath out the air now contains roughly 4% less Oxygen than when you breathed in, this has been replaced by another gas, called carbon dioxide.
The oxygen in the atmosphere also affects our lives in other ways. It reacts chemically with a number of other materials. Oxygen will combine with reactive metals to form metal oxides. This is called corrosion. Most metal oxides are useful as they produce a hard protective layer. Aluminium Oxide for example forms a protective layer on the surface of Aluminium, this grey coating protects the body of the metal underneath from further corrosion. Modern Aeroplanes have used this characteristic of aluminium as a choice of construction material.
Iron(III) oxide is formed when iron reacts with water and oxygen and is not useful. You will know iron oxide, more commonly, as rust; it makes the metal flaky and weak. The corrosion will eat into the metal, which flakes off as the oxide is built up. There are ways of protecting iron objects from oxidation, putting oil on your bike chain, for example, will protect it from rust and keep it strong.
Oxygen can be produced in the lab by the chemical decomposition of hydrogen peroxide .
To test for Oxygen light a wooden splint, put out the flame but keep it glowing, place the glowing splint back into the Test tube of Oxygen and it will ignite once again.
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