Chapter 11: How Elements Decieve

By Kamie Chester

Synopsis

Life is never cut and dry, black or white, or easy to understand. Elements are the same way. Some elements appear to have one purpose or a certain quality, but then completely deceive humans because they actually do something very different. Sometimes elements deceive for human benefit and other elements deceive for their demise. For example, Titanium deceives the human body so that prosthetic limbs can be made for people that have lost their real limbs (Chapter 11, Pg. 190-191). Another element that deceives humans in a positive way is iodine. Iodine appears to be an ordinary element or more commonly, an ingredient in salt, but it is very crucial to the human brain and how it produces thoughts and feelings. On the other end of the spectrum, Nitrogen appears to be a useful element that can suppress the flammability of oxygen, but too much of it will suppress all oxygen causing humans to not be able to breath and they will die (Chapter 11, Pg.187-189). Beryllium deceives human tastes buds because it tastes like sugar, but if ingested beryllium is very toxic to the human body (Chapter 11, Pg.193-194). Finally, some elements deceive in a way that does not affect humans in a positive or negative way. Potassium and sodium are too prime examples of elements that deceive in a neutral way. Potassium and sodium deceive the taste buds of humans because these elements can taste sweet or salty depending on what they are combined with, so our taste buds never know what to expect (Chapter 11, Pg. 194-195). Always be on the look out, you never know when an element may try to deceive you.

Elements Mentioned in Chapter 11:

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Nitrogen


  • Atomic Number: 7 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Atomic Mass: 14.007 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Period: 2 (row) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Group: 15 (column) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Electron Configuration: 1s^2, 2s^2, 2p^3 (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Classified: other non-metals (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Nitrogen does naturally occur on earth and it is the fifth most abundant element in the universe. Nitrogen makes up 78% of the Earth's atmosphere. Nitrogen is found as various compounds in all living things, so it can not be traced back to one specific geographical area. Any location that has humans, animals, or plants of any kind has nitrogen.
  • Pure nitrogen can be found in nature, but the largest use of nitrogen is to make Ammonia (NH3). Ammonia is the combination of nitrogen and hydrogen and is used to make fertilizers and explosives (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015).
  • Uses: Nitrogen can be used as a protective shield in the semiconductor industry (welding and soldering operations), help force crude oil to the surface for oil companies, and liquid nitrogen can be used for refrigeration and preservation (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015).
  • Nitrogen was discovered in Edinburgh, Scotland by Daniel Rutherford in 1772 (RSC, 2016). The word "nitrogen" comes from the Greek words "nitron" and "genes" that mean "saltpetre forming" when combined (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015).The name for elements in nitrogen's column, "pnictogens", come from a Greek word that means "choking" or "strangling" (Chapter 11, Pg. 189).
  • Characteristics: suppress/stops flammability- absorbs some of the heat from oxygen, odorless, colorless, does not cause acid build up in human veins (Chapter 11, Pg. 187, 189)
  • How It Deceives: Nitrogen has many positive characteristics, like the fact that it flammability and help humans breath (with the right amount). NASA found out just how important nitrogen was whenever they thought it took up too much room and filled a space shuttle with pure oxygen. The result was three astronauts caught on fire due to the oxygen and died because of this choice. Nitrogen deceived NASA because they did not realize it's importance in reducing oxygen's flammable nature (Chapter 11, Pg. 187-188). However. these positive qualities may deceive you because nitrogen has a harmful side as well. For example, pure nitrogen will take all oxygen away from humans, including what small amount they have stored inside of their causing them to not be able to breathe and die. Finally, pure nitrogen can be deceiving because human brains do recognize what it is in taking, until it is too late (Chapter 11, Pg 188-189). Humans have no fair warning, they die without any type of choking or spangling beforehand. This makes the name "pnictogens" very misleading (Chapter 11, Pg.189) .
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Titanium


  • Atomic Number: 22 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Atomic Mass: 47.861 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Period: 4 (row) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Group: 4 (column) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Electron Configuration: 1s^2, 2s^2, 2p^6, 3s^2, 3p^6, 4s^2, 3d^2 (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Classified: transition metals (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Titanium does occur naturally on earth and it is the ninth most abundant element in the earth's crust. Titanium makes up .57% of the earth's crust. Pure titanium can be found on earth, but is mainly found in minerals like rutile (TiO2), ilmenite (FeTiO3), and sphene (CaTiSiO5) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) . Major deposits of these titanium minerals are found all over the world in places such as Australia, Canada, India, Norway, South Africa, Ukraine, and the United States (MEC, 2016).
  • Pure titanium can be found uncombined in nature, but the largest use of the element is Titanium Oxide (TiO2). Titanium Oxide is used as pigment in making white paint (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015).
  • Uses: Titanium can be used to make prosthetic limbs, implanted teeth, screw on fingers, and replaceable sockets (like hip sockets- because it does not react within the human body) (Chapter 11, Pg.190-191). Titanium and titanium alloys are also used in airplanes, missiles, and rockets. Titanium is mainly used as a pigment in house paint, artists' paint, plastics, enamels, and paper (RSC, 2016).
  • Titanium was discovered in Cornwall, England by William Gregor in 1791. Titanium gets its name from the Greek word "titans" that means "first sons of the earth" (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) (RSC, 2016).
  • Characteristics: strong, shiny, light weight, expensive, the only element that will burn in an atmosphere of pure nitrogen (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) (RSC, 2016)
  • How It Deceives: Certain circumstances require humans to have to replace their original limbs with prosthetic limbs. It took many years to figure out how integrate these prosthetic limbs into the human body. Wood and other materials like Iron were used to make the new arms and legs at first, but poses of blood cells surrounded the materials and submerged the materials with slippery collagen that would allow the prosthetic to slip off or snap free. However, titanium deceived scientist because they thought that since the human body did not require titanium it would not work, but it did. Titanium deceived the body in a positive way by hypnotizing the blood cells. Since, titanium creates zero response it is able to con the human bodies' bone forming cells into attaching to the titanium like it would a real bone. Human senses can be very gullible and easy to deceive, but it has positive affect in this case (Chapter 11, Pg.190-191), .
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Beryllium


  • Atomic Number: 4 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Atomic Mass: 9.012 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Period: 2 (row) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Group: 2 (column) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Electron Configuration: 1s^2, 2s^2 (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Classified: alkaline earth metals (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Beryllium is a naturally occurring element that can be found as pure beryllium, but is mainly found in minerals. The main minerals from which Beryllium is obtained are bertrandite (4BeO, 2SiO2, H20) and beryl (Be3Al2(SiO3)6). These minerals are greatly mined for in Utah. Beryl is found prominently in granite and special types of igneous rocks. The materials are industrial minerals and can be used in alloys (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) (MEC 2016).
  • Uses: Beryllium can be used to make windows for X-ray tubes and as a moderator for nuclear reactors. When beryllium is combined with copper it can be used to form wear resistant materials. Also, beryllium alloys can be used to make parts for space shuttles like windshields and brake disks (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) .
  • Beryllium was discovered in France by Louis-Nicholas Vauquelin in 1797. Beryllium gets its name from the word "beryl", a type of mineral (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) .
  • Characteristics: tastes like sugar, pale, hard to melt, insoluble, low density, toxic to humans when ingested (Chapter 11, Pg. 192-193)
  • How It Deceives: Some human taste buds are reliable, but sweet and sour taste buds are easy to be deceived by. Humans can eat Beryllium and think it is sugar because their taste buds register the same flavor for both, but only one of them is toxic. Beryllium deceives human taste buds into thinking that it is sugar, but then the humans die from the toxic substance (Chapter 11, Pg.193-194).
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Potassium


  • Atomic Number: 19 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Atomic Mass: 39.098 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Period: 4 (row) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Group: 1 (column) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Electron Configuration: 1s^2, 2s^2, 2p^6, 3s^2, 3p^6, 4s^1 (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Classified: alkali metals (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Potassium is never found free in nature because it is extremely reactive. Potassium can form many important compounds. The most common potassium compound is Potassium Chloride (KCI) that is used in fertilizers to take the place of salt and produce other chemicals. Potassium Chloride is often found in ancient lake and sea beds. However, Caustic Potash, another source of potassium, is often mined and found in Germany, Mexico, California, and Utah (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015).
  • Uses: Potassium ions help nerve cells send signals and help muscles contract (humans would be brain dead and their hearts would stop without the charge from these ions)(Chapter 11, Pg. 194). Potassium is also used in fertilizers and in making glass. Detergent and soup contain potassium and many foods do as well so that human health can stay normal (RSC, 2016).
  • Potassium was discovered in England by Sir Humphry Davy in 1807 (RSG, 2016). Potassium derives from the English word "potash" and potassium's chemical symbol comes from the Latin word for alkali, "kalium" (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015).
  • Characteristics: tastes salty-pure potassium (but not as much as its chemical cousin sodium), exists as charged ions in nature (Chapter 11, Pg.194), very reactive, soft/easy to cut through, silver (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) (RSG, 2016) (MEC, 2016)
  • How It Deceives: The human brain detects charges from ions to determine what flavor a substance is while eating. Potassium alone tastes salty, however, when mixed with other substances it can taste sweet or sour. This deceives the human brain because it never knows what flavor to expect. A human could eat something that contains potassium and it assume its going to taste sweet, but then it turns out potassium had bonded with something that made it taste sour. These incidents deceive not only the human brain but the tongue as well (Chapter 11, Pg. 194-195).
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Sodium


  • Atomic Number: 11 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Atomic Mass: 22.990 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Period: 3 (row) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Group: 1 (column) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Electron Configuration: 1s^2, 2s^2, 2p^6, 3s^1 (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Classified: alkali metals (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Sodium is never found free in nature because it is highly reactive. Sodium is the sixth most abundant element on earth makes up 2.6% of the earth's crust. The majority of sodium comes from electrolysis of molten mineral Sodium Chloride (Halite). Halite is mainly mined for in the U.S. China, Germany, Russia, and Canada. Halite is often used as a food seasoning, for road safety to melt snow and ice, and in medicines. However, sodium comes in many more compounds, that most common being (NaCl) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) (MEC, 2016) .
  • Uses: Sodium ions help nerve cells send signals and muscles contract (humans would be brain depgad and their hearts would stop without the charge from these ions)(Chapter 11, Pg. 194) . Nuclear reactors often use liquid sodium as a coolant. On the other hand, sodium vapor is used to create light in streetlights (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) .
  • Sodium was discovered in London, England by Sir Humphry Davy in 1807 (RSC, 2016). Sodium gets its name form the English word "soda" and the Medieval Latin word "sodanum" that mean "headache remedy". Sodium's chemical symbol comes from the from the Latin word "natrium" that is the equilvelant of "sodium carbonate" (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015).
  • Characteristics: soft metal that tarnishes within seconds of being exposed to air, exists as charged ions in nature, reacts vigorously with water, tastes like salt (RSC, 2016) (Chapter 11, Pg. 194)
  • How It Deceives: The human brain detects charges from ions to determine what flavor a substance is while eating. Sodium alone tastes salty, however, when mixed with other substances it can taste sweet or sour. This deceives the human brain because it never knows what flavor to expect. A human could eat something that contains sodium and it assume its going to taste sour, but then it turns out sodium had bonded with something that made it taste sweet. These incidents deceive not only the human brain but the tongue as well (Chapter 11, Pg. 194-195).
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Iodine


  • Atomic Number: 53 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Atomic Mass: 126.904 (Chapter 11, Pg. 186)
  • Period: 5 (row) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Group: 17 (column) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Electron Configuration: 1s^2, 2s^2, 2p^6, 3s^2, 3p^6, 4s^2, 3d^10, 4p^6, 5s^2, 4d^10. 5p^5 (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Classified: halogens (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015)
  • Iodine is a a naturally occurring element that is mainly found in Chile. Underground brines (water with lost of dissolved salts and ions) that have been in contact with natural gas and oil deposits contain most of earth's iodine. Chile has the largest portion of iodine, but Japan and Russia are other primary sources of iodine as well (MEC, 2016).
  • Uses: The human body uses iodine in its diet to prevent birth defects and mental retardation (Chapter 11, Pg. 197). Iodine also helps humans prevent developing Goiter, a swelling of the thyroid gland in the neck, that could lead to mental retardation because the thyroid controls human all human hormones, including the brains (Chapter 11, Pg.198-199).
  • Iodine was discovered in Paris, France by Barnard Courtois in 1811 (RSC, 2016). Iodine gets its name from the Greek word "iodes" that means "violet" (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) .
  • Characteristics: heavy, crucial to human health, contained in salt, can burn skin and damage eyes, pure iodine is poisonous if ingested, when heated iodine sublimes (goes from a solid to vapor, skips liquid phase) (Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, 2015) (MEC, 2016) (Chapter 7, Pg.198-199)
  • How It Deceives: Iodine appears to be an ordinary ingredient in salt, but it is a crucial element to the human body. Reason, emotion, and memories of humans all depend on the health of the brain and iodine helps keep the brain healthy. Iodine not only deceives humans by how important it appears to be, but it also deceives humans because it appears to just affect the physical human brain when it is actually affecting humans mentally and emotionally even more (Chapter 11, Pg. 197).

Summary

The periodic table contains elements that are used in countless ways. The elements above all deceive humans in some way. Some elements, like titanium and iodine, deceive in a positive way. Others elements, like nitrogen and beryllium can deceive humans in a very negative way. Sodium and potassium deceive as well, but in a way that does not help or harm humans. The deceitful nature of these elements help, harm, protect, and work with humans to create necessities humans use everyday. It is important that humans are aware of the deceitfulness of these elements because it could save their life or take it away from them, and it could happen right inside their own body. Stay knowledgeable and stay safe, you are a walking periodic table (Chapter 11, Pg.186-199).

References

RSC. (2016). Nitrogen. Retrieved from http://www.rsc.org/periodic-table/element/7/nitrogen

Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility - Office of Science Education. (2015). The Element Nitrogen. Retrieved from http://education.jlab.org/itselemental/ele007.html

Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility - Office of Science Education. (2015). The Element Titanium. Retrieved from http://education.jlab.org/itselemental/ele022.html

RSC. (2016). Titanium. Retrieved from http://www.rsc.org/periodic-table/element/22/titanium

MEC. (2016). Titanium. Retrieved from https://www.mineralseducationcoalition.org/minerals/titanium

Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility - Office of Science Education. (2015). The Element Beryllium. Retrieved from http://education.jlab.org/itselemental/ele004.html

MEC. (2016). Beryllium. Retrieved from

https://www.mineralseducationcoalition.org/minerals/beryllium

Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility - Office of Science Education. (2015). The Element Potassium. Retrieved from http://education.jlab.org/itselemental/ele019.html

RSC. (2016). Potassium. Retrieved from http://www.rsc.org/periodic-table/element/19/potassium

MEC. (2016). Potassium. Retrieved from https://www.mineralseducationcoalition.org/elements/potassium

Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility - Office of Science Education. (2015). The Element Sodium. Retrieved from http://education.jlab.org/itselemental/ele011.html

RSC. (2016). Sodium. Retrieved from http://www.rsc.org/periodic-table/element/11/sodium

MEC. (2016). Sodium. Retrieved from https://www.mineralseducationcoalition.org/elements/sodium

Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility - Office of Science Education. (2015). The Element Iodine. Retrieved from http://education.jlab.org/itselemental/ele053.html

RSC. (2016). Iodine. Retrieved from http://www.rsc.org/periodic-table/element/53/iodine

MEC. (2016). Iodine. Retrieved from https://www.mineralseducationcoalition.org/minerals/iodine