Fluorine (F)

Sam Reitenour - Period 1

Basic Information on Fluorine

  • Chemical Name - Fluorine
  • Chemical Symbol - F
  • Atomic Mass - 18.998
  • Atomic Number - 9
  • Number of protons - 9
  • Number of electrons - 9
  • Number of neutrons - 10
  • Electron configuration - [He] 2s2 2p5
  • Group name - Halogens (Group 17/VIIA)
  • Metal/nonmetal/metalloid - nonmetal

Properties of Fluorine

  • Boiling point - 85.03 K, -188.12 C, -306.62 F
  • Melting point - 53.53 K, -219.62 C, -363.32 F
  • State at room temperature - gas

Fluorine is a bright yellow (occasionally colorless or white) gas at room temperature. In gaseous form, it can only be seen if it is in long tubes.

Fluorine can be condensed into a liquid, which will be bright yellow in color.

Solid flourine is a brown crystallized rock. The crystals inside the rock can be various colors, such as yellow, purple, grey, and green. Fluorine is very hard to separate from its compounds and things that it is found in, so almost all of the time it is handled as a part of another substance. Pure fluorine has killed several scientists who tried to separate it.

History, Uses, and Concerns

Flourine was discovered in France by Henri Moissan, a French chemist, in 1886. He discovered it by isolating it using a platinum apparatus. Fluorine occurs naturally in the earth's crust in rocks, coal, and clay. Soil that blows in the wind also contains fluorine. The element is obtained via mining and is mined in China, Mongolia, Russia, Mexico, and South Africa.

Fluorine's most well known daily use is in toothpaste. Fluorine compounds are added to this everyday dental product to help prevent tooth decay. Fluorine salts were once used in metal welding, but today their primary use other than toothpaste is in the nuclear industry, where fluorine is used to insulate high-power electric transformers and separate uranium isotopes. Fluorine is also used in refrigerators and air conditioners.

Fluorine in drinking water and polluting the air from nuclear factories is of concern in America. Fluorine can be poisonous and dangerous if leaked from these factories and many fluorine compounds are dangerous to humans.

Three Common Flourine Compounds

Hydrogen flouride is a compound of fluorine and hydrogen that is very poisonous and can cause blindness, as it will rapidly destroy your corneas if you get it on your eyes. It is commonly used in industry as a part of hydrofluoric acid.

Potassium fluoride is composed of potassium and fluorine and is used in organic chemistry.

Sodium fluoride is made when fluorine and sodium combine and it is used in pills for cavity prevention. It is also sometimes added to foods and drinks to help prevent any dental damages the food or drink may possibly have.