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No Longer "Noble"; Argon Compound Found In Space

timothy posted about 7 months ago | from the one-illusion-is-gone dept.

Space 110

mbstone writes "Scientists at the University College of London — where argon was originally discovered in 1894 — have now found spectroscopic signatures of molecules of argon hydride (ArH), said to be produced via explosive nucleosynthesis in a core-collapse supernova in the Crab Nebula. The post-supernova molecular dust was observed by the Herschel Space Observatory shortly before it ran out of coolant in April.."

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110 comments

What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

hubie (108345) | about 7 months ago | (#45695081)

I don't get the connection between the title and the summary.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

hubie (108345) | about 7 months ago | (#45695095)

Never mind. I figured it out.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695109)

Noble as in inert - it's not supposed to react to form a stable molecule.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (5, Informative)

nbritton (823086) | about 7 months ago | (#45695365)

Noble as in inert - it's not supposed to react to form a stable molecule.

Noble doesn't imply non-reactive, all of the noble elements can be ionized, with enough energy, just like any other element. What it means is they have a stable electron configuration. Helium, Neon, Argon, Krypton, Xenon, and Radon all have there outermost electron orbital shells filled. This means they're not inclined to give, borrow, or take electrons from other elements, this is why there called noble.

The fact that argon hydride was found in space implies that krypton, xenon, and radon hydride can also be found in space.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (4, Interesting)

gstrickler (920733) | about 7 months ago | (#45695579)

The fact that argon hydride was found in space implies that krypton, xenon, and radon hydride can also be found in space.

Probably, but since the quantities of those elements will be dramatically lower than argon, detecting them will likely be much more difficult.

Except (2, Insightful)

justthinkit (954982) | about 7 months ago | (#45696623)

they're not inclined to give, borrow, or take electrons from other elements

Except these aren't the words used on the wiki [wikipedia.org] page. The word I was taught is "share". For example, Hydrogen has one electron and desires two for stability. So it shares one from Oxygen or Carbon, etc. And in that sharing, Oxygen (desiring two) gets its needs satisfied by sharing one each with two Hydrogens.

Re:Except (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696695)

The phrase I was taught was "form a covalent bond" or "form an ionic bond"; giving, taking, borrowing and sharing were all things we did with toys in kindergarten.

If... (4, Informative)

mha (1305) | about 7 months ago | (#45696939)

...you want to 1-up him you'll have to go for the quantum mechanic explanation of bonds. As far as *useful* models for chemical bonds go, even chemists use something pretty far from the "truth" . There are valence bond theory, orbital hybridization, resonance, and quite a few more.

When it comes to explaining nature, you use the model that is most USEFUL for what you want to explain, not for the most complicated one possible to impress your peers because you are so smart. :) That is why in many books atoms are still represented by red, white, blue "balls" and no one complains about it.

And by the way, the in the oxygen-hydrogen bond oxygen actually does sort of "borrow" the electron - the probability distribution for the location of that electron shifts towards the nucleus of the oxygen. That is why water molecules, while actually neutral (if not ionized), still act polar - the oxygen is essentially negative, the hydrogens positive. There is no equal "sharing".

Re:If... (0)

justthinkit (954982) | about 7 months ago | (#45697633)

While I disagree with much of what you say, I'll just focus on this:

...that electron shifts towards the nucleus of the oxygen. That is why water molecules, while actually neutral (if not ionized), still act polar - the oxygen is essentially negative, the hydrogens positive.

That is not why water acts polar. Water acts polar because of the nature of the oxygen atom itself. It has 6 electrons and wants to share 2 more. The electrons pair up into 4 groups or areas. Two of those areas are on the Oxygen atom only...think of them as rabbit ears. The other two share with Hydrogen atoms. Think of them like legs of the Oxygen. The point is that on half the Oxygen atom there are nothing but electrons...4 of them. This makes that side of the Oxygen negative. Oxygen is asymmetrically charged. THIS is why it acts polar. The side that is sharing electrons with the Hydrogen is neutral, the other side where there are 4 electrons, all part of the Oxygen atom in the first place, is negative. Not because the Oxygen is "out muscling" the Hydrogen.

My original reason for posting was to point out that no atom is "taking" anything. That would completely unbalance the charges of a given atom. Not gonna happen. Instead it is a sharing. Yes the sharing can be a bit uneven, depending on the number of protons in the nucleus, atom size, room in the outer orbital, etc. etc. But bonds involving sharing of electrons. Period.

When you fire off phrases like:
There are valence bond theory, orbital hybridization, resonance, and quite a few more. it makes me realize that you don't have a clue what you are talking about. Throwing three descriptions at a concept does not explain it.

Re:If... (1)

dkf (304284) | about 7 months ago | (#45698165)

My original reason for posting was to point out that no atom is "taking" anything.

When you've got "taking" of an electron, you've got ionisation.

Re:If... (1)

icebike (68054) | about 7 months ago | (#45699061)

My original reason for posting was to point out that no atom is "taking" anything.

When you've got "taking" of an electron, you've got ionisation.

Well, TFA states explicitly that it the argon36 is essentially sharing an electron with hydrogen.
So it appears there might be some "sharing" even if there is no "taking". Very polite. Plays well with others.

Re:If... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45698187)

> Throwing three descriptions at a concept does not explain it.

The point he made, handily, was was that it wasn't worth explaining them to a troll.

Re:If... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45699317)

I am wondering where you learned this from. I remember quite clearly from college chemistry the parents description as oxygen is a strong oxidizer and it is a simple molecule and I don't follow that because he waved his hands about many models that he is somehow ignorant. Your model for instance is sorta right, but is incredibly simplistic and does not accurately account for electron shells, so...

Re:If... (1)

TheCarp (96830) | about 7 months ago | (#45703259)

> Water acts polar because of the nature of the oxygen atom
> itself. It has 6 electrons and wants to share 2 more. The
> electrons pair up into 4 groups or areas. Two of those areas are
> on the Oxygen atom only...think of them as rabbit ears.

Sounds like what I studied in school; Only thing missing is that it is the geometry of putting 4 points around a central point that means you must get bunny ears and can't have a straight line (which would be non-polar)

Water must get bent!

Re:Just Stuck Up. (1)

anwyn (266338) | about 7 months ago | (#45699283)

That is not Nobel, its just Stuck Up.

Re:Except (1)

Gen_Music (2420986) | about 7 months ago | (#45705571)

What I learned is that by the very nature of this sharing, that Argon atom has to be more stable in mutual 'sharing' with the hydrogen protons than it was as an Argon atom. Seeing as the Argon atom is completely inert, and therefore is as stable as it gets, I'm pretty curious that this is even possible.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45697919)

Not a single "krypton can be found in space" joke? really?

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

Zynder (2773551) | about 7 months ago | (#45698025)

I think the Krypton in space was destroyed in a supernova...

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45703547)

How do they know this argon hydride they found in space wasn't produced in some high-energy reaction?

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about 7 months ago | (#45695529)

You mean my plans to build an Argon bomb and take over the world aren't going to work?

Damn.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (2)

gstrickler (920733) | about 7 months ago | (#45695609)

You mean my plans to build an Argon bomb and take over the world aren't going to work?

You'll just have to use 39Ar or 42Ar, and probably need a H-fusion reaction to detonate it.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (3, Funny)

Zynder (2773551) | about 7 months ago | (#45698101)

You are both wrong. You have to use Illudium which must be detonated with a Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator. If you don't, you won't have an Earth-shattering Kaboom!

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45701733)

Evidently the substance was expelled from a black hole with explosive di-ArH-ea.

El NIÑO (3, Funny)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about 7 months ago | (#45696295)

Noble In Name Only
I thought we could rely on these gasses to stay true to their column on the periodic table, but, no, they've sold out, just like that whorish oxygen and hydrogen, which will twerk with even the most sordid elements of society.
We're just going to have to look elsewhere for the stability we crave at all levels.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696807)

No, noble != inert

When I first learned about the elements many years ago, the description for those elements in the rightmost column was "inert". This means completely non-reactive.

Later on, when chemists made compounds of xenon, they realized the elements might not be so inert, after all. They gave the elements a new name: noble. They were not truly inert, but tended to have that tendency. Like other noble elements--such as gold or platinum--the elements in the rightmost column were disdainful of mixing with the hoi-polloi. It didn't mean they couldn't combine with other elements; they are just disinclined.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (3, Informative)

Sique (173459) | about 7 months ago | (#45697747)

Actually, it's much more complicated. The gas Argon got its name from greek "argos", which means inert. The chemical group got the name of "noble gases" at the end of the 19th century from William Ramsay (Nobel prize in 1904). The first compound of a noble gas was discovered in 1962 by Neil Bartlett. Argon was the last noble gas for which a compound could be synthesized (2000).

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (3, Informative)

DoctorChestburster79 (3017229) | about 7 months ago | (#45695115)

I don't get the connection between the title and the summary.

That far right side of the Periodic Table...where Helium, Neon, Xenon, Argon, and Radon live. Those elements have always been taught as being chemically inert (i.e. not able to be combined with any other elements), hence why they are called "noble" gases. This apparently is the first instance where that rule isn't necessarily true.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (3, Informative)

_Shad0w_ (127912) | about 7 months ago | (#45695157)

Only it's not; apparently compounds of the noble gases have been known for a while. The only thing there's no known compound of is helium. At least that's what one my chemistry friends is telling me.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695271)

This isn't even a compound, though. It's a molecular ion, ArH+. If you added an electron to it, it would fall apart, since ArH (neutral) is not bound.

A similar molecular ion exists for helium, HeH+. This ion is very important for the evolution of the early universe, since it can emit IR radiation to cool gas clouds, allowing stars to form from the nearly-pure H/He clouds that existed after the big bang.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695391)

heh...

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

JustOK (667959) | about 7 months ago | (#45695473)

I thought Two and a Half Men followed the Big Bang?

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695843)

Nope, it's now the Millers.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695993)

That's just a theory, anyway.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 7 months ago | (#45696991)

Have any evidence to support your hypothesis that the big bang is just a theory?

According to my parents I am direct evidence the big bang,
and my hair and skin are different than theirs due to the uncertainty principal.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | about 7 months ago | (#45697071)

...and my hair and skin are different than theirs due to the uncertainty principal.

As is Quantum Mechanics or one of them isn't sure they're your parent?

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

Zynder (2773551) | about 7 months ago | (#45698211)

You get a big ol WHOOSH today. That was a joke. JustOk called the show Big Bang but the show's name is The Big Bang Theory, hence why AC said it was just a theory. You are so eager to get your troll on, you miss some of the obvious stuff.

Re: What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45701201)

Lol, did you miss the part of his post where he said that his parents having intercourse is a "big bang" that predates some television show?

I mean, my parents told me about one night where the power went out, but a big bang?

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45698229)

> Have any evidence to support your hypothesis that the big bang is just a theory?

From wikipedia.
> The Big Bang theory is the prevailing cosmological model that describes the early development of the Universe.[1]

That happens to link to 2 sources. It's a theory because there's evidence that fits the model, evidence that does not, and no way to make an experiment to reproduce it.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695383)

This, mod parent up up up.

Noble elements aren't that because they CANNOT combine with things, they are that because they RARELY combine with things.
Their outer shell is pretty bloated, so the amount of things they can combine with are extremely limited.

Title is so horribly wrong.
A better title would have been "Less Noble, argon compound found in space."
More so because it was found in nature, which is pretty damn impressive to find.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (2)

rubycodez (864176) | about 7 months ago | (#45697569)

There are the "fullerene compounds", like He@C60, where noble gas atom is trapped inside carbon fullerene. that @ sign means trapped atom. they have distinct chemical properties even though the inside noble gas isn't chemically bonded but instead surrounded by carbon. Argon, Krypton and Xenon ones exist also.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695159)

Not the first example of a noble gas reacting - xenon difluoride is know, and in fact commercially available.

Argon, however, is incredibly inert - we fill our inert-atmosphere glovebox (1 ppm air, 1ppm water) with it ...

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

Vlad_the_Inhaler (32958) | about 7 months ago | (#45695331)

Several of the others form more-or-less stable molecules- usually with Hydrogen, none had been found for Argon up to now.
The circumstances under which it forms appear to be rather extreme. I don't know enough (ok, anything) about Nuclear Chemistry to know if it is significant that the Isotope is Ar36 rather than the Ar40 we get here. Normally it would make no difference but this is an extreme case.

Re: What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695439)

36Ar is the cosmically abundant isotope. On Earth, most argon is 40 Ar, because it comes from the radioactive decay of 40K. Earth is poor in 36Ar because it formed at a position in the solar nebula too warm to condense Ar.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

atomicdragon (619181) | about 7 months ago | (#45696745)

Argon compounds have been formed in the lab for nearly 15 years. No Nobel compounds have been directly observed in space of any kind, which is the new part, not that Argon in particular was found in a compound.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45697377)

NEUTRAL argon compounds have been known for about 15 years (the compound HArF, stable below about 17 K).

Argon molecular ions such as this one have been known for much longer.

Note that ArH+ is isoelectronic with the neutral molecule hydrogen chloride, so it should not be surprising that it's stable.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 7 months ago | (#45695507)

it's just there so that the submitter could act snobby with knowledge and fail at it.

I really doubt anyone is going to stop using argon for it's relatively inert properties because if this..

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (2)

Dcnjoe60 (682885) | about 7 months ago | (#45695779)

I don't get the connection between the title and the summary.

That far right side of the Periodic Table...where Helium, Neon, Xenon, Argon, and Radon live. Those elements have always been taught as being chemically inert (i.e. not able to be combined with any other elements), hence why they are called "noble" gases. This apparently is the first instance where that rule isn't necessarily true.

Of course it took the energy of the collapse of a star to produce those compounds, so for practical purpose, those gases are still all pretty noble.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (5, Funny)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 7 months ago | (#45696023)

That far right side of the Periodic Table

Also known as the fascist elements.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (1)

Vlad_the_Inhaler (32958) | about 7 months ago | (#45696763)

Elements which can't combine with anyone else, "herding cats" comes to mind.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (4, Informative)

rubycodez (864176) | about 7 months ago | (#45695179)

But worth explaining for others that either didn't have chemistry class or maybe snoozed through it. The atoms of "noble" gases have their outer electron shell full so are very non-reactive, they usually don't make chemical bounds with other elements except under extraordinary circumstances requiring a lot of energy. Helium, neon, argon, and radon are probably the ones most people have heard mentioned at some time in daily life.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noble_gas [wikipedia.org]

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (2)

Deadstick (535032) | about 7 months ago | (#45696145)

Helium, neon, argon, and radon are probably the ones most people have heard mentioned

Everybody's heard of krypton, although most of them think it's a planet and Tom Clancy couldn't spell it.

Re:What does the comment about "Noble" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45700079)

'Krytron' in the Clancy oeuvre is a valid term, if that's what you're thinking. It refers to a vacuum tube used to trigger other devices with precise timing characteristics.

Nothing new about argon compounds. (1)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | about 7 months ago | (#45700893)

Argon forms compounds without too much coercion. Back in the mid '60s chemists were playing with them regularly. As I understand it (I'm NOT a chemist and haven't done this myself):

Just mix argon and fuourine in a pressure vessel and heat it up. (VERY CAREFULLY! Fluorine gas is deadly!) You'll quickly get copious amounts of argon difluoride, tetrafluoride, and even some hexafluoride. These are stable enough to stick around once you bring things down to room temperatures.

Once you've got them, there are techniques for substituting other stuff for one or more of the fluorines.

But you DO have to be careful, even after the fluorine is out of the picture. I hear these compounds tend to be explosive, due to argon's propensity for dumping the riders and flying away alone.

Oops. Had that confused. (1)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | about 7 months ago | (#45700933)

Did a little checking. It's Xenon that they were playing with back then. Xenon is reasonably easy to convince to make covalent bonds, and some of its compounds are used industrially and available in commercial quantities.

Argon is less reactive, and they didn't get it to form compounds until 2000, with some encouragement from an ultraviolet light source to kick an electron up to another level.

Hot stuff (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695105)

I masterbate to Obama and Limbaugh at the same time.. Wrap your head/dong around that one.

Re:Hot stuff (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695119)

not very hard to figure out, since they are both pro-corporate fascist jerk-offs

they both have more in common with Adolf Hitler than any American traditional "left" or "right" wing stance

Re:Hot stuff (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695167)

So you're both a chubby chaser and love BBC? Nothing that unusual.

Re:Hot stuff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695607)

You saw that gay porn video, too, huh?

Re:Hot stuff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696407)

I'm still trying to wrap my head around your spelling of "masturbate".

Re:Hot stuff (0)

HornWumpus (783565) | about 7 months ago | (#45697211)

Once you reach 3 dan in fapping you are a master.

What's next? (4, Informative)

DaTrueDave (992134) | about 7 months ago | (#45695135)

Do we categorize Argon as a non-noble gas, or do we redefine what a noble gas actually is?

Wait, I guess noble doesn't mean what I thought it meant, or there were already plenty of exceptions, as I just read this wiki article: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noble_gas_compounds [wikipedia.org]

Re:What's next? (4, Interesting)

jo_ham (604554) | about 7 months ago | (#45695319)

Argon has already been shown to be "non-noble" many years ago - hell, you can buy Argon compounds from chemical suppliers right now (like Argon difluoride).

The title is simply scientific ignorance.

Re:What's next? (3, Informative)

Tim the Gecko (745081) | about 7 months ago | (#45695435)

Argon has already been shown to be "non-noble" many years ago - hell, you can buy Argon compounds from chemical suppliers right now (like Argon difluoride).

I think you mean Xenon difluoride [wikipedia.org] . I can't find any reports of Argon difluoride being produced.

Re:What's next? (1)

jo_ham (604554) | about 7 months ago | (#45695571)

I do mean XeF2 - I put Ar instead without proofing my comment.

Re:What's next? (4, Informative)

jeffb (2.718) (1189693) | about 7 months ago | (#45695471)

You are confused. You can buy xenoncompounds off the shelf, but certainly not argon compounds. Nobody has yet made argon difluoride, and I'm not sure current theory supports its existence.

The first synthesis of an argon compound was reported in 2000, so the first part of the headline is misleading -- this discovery itself doesn't "demote" argon. But it's still interesting news.

Re:What's next? (1)

jo_ham (604554) | about 7 months ago | (#45695581)

Yes, I meant to write xenon difluriode (we have some in the lab), not argon.

Re:What's next? (3, Funny)

rmdingler (1955220) | about 7 months ago | (#45695355)

This. Instead of shopping for Christmas before the Baptists get out of church and flood the stores, I am looking up noble gases, then noble metals, and then electric potential on a Sunday morning.... sigh.

Re: What's next? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696033)

A much better use of your time than succumbing to the over-commercialization of Christmas.

Re:What's next? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695373)

Do we categorize Argon as a non-noble gas, or do we redefine what a noble gas actually is?

Steady on there. I still haven't quite got my head round out what Pluto is now without you redefining noble gasses as well!

Re:What's next? (1)

jeffb (2.718) (1189693) | about 7 months ago | (#45695495)

Noble gas compounds are, indeed, old news. No need to change names or categorizations, though. After all, we still refer to human members of "the nobility", no matter how ignobly they may behave.

Re:What's next? (2)

mysidia (191772) | about 7 months ago | (#45695949)

Do we categorize Argon as a non-noble gas, or do we redefine what a noble gas actually is?

We don't necessarily need to do either; the article headline is a little bit misleading.

Non-reactivity, or the non-existence of molecules is not inherent to the definition of Noble gas. Non-reactivity is a description of what is believed to be true about noble gasses. The noble gasses were long believed to be completely nonreactive; but now, compounds of Xenon, Krypton, Radon.... and now Argon are known. We just need to find some compounds of Helium and Neon, and then.... compounds will be known of all the noble gasses.

Well, for two: explosive nucleosynthesis in a core-collapse supernova is not exactly your every day chemical reaction.

For three: Argon is still relatively inert. For the most part; you will not find compounds of argon in nature, or common materials that Argon will readily form compounds with in ordinary chemical reactions.

Re:What's next? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696791)

We just need to find some compounds of Helium and Neon, and then.... compounds will be known of all the noble gasses.

Spectra of neon and helium hydride ions have been observed years ago in the lab, which is what was found here with Argon. Neutral argon compounds have been formed in the lab years ago too.

Simple solution in tune with the times (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696155)

Do we categorize Argon as a non-noble gas, or do we redefine what a noble gas actually is?

Neither --- you're not thinking sufficiently American.

Send the supernova a Cease & Desist letter. That'll teach'em to stop messing with us!

Re:What's next? (3, Informative)

fermion (181285) | about 7 months ago | (#45696599)

These things are often oversimplified to teach the basics. For the purposes of a introductory chemistry class, the group 18 elements are not going to play a part in chemical reactions under everyday circumstances. This is simplified down to 8 valence electrons. When one talks about s^2p^6 for everything but He, all the eyes starts going into the forehead and all the other details become lost and questions such as 'is this going to be on the test' get most of the attention. What we are talking about here is not ordinary chemistry, but supernovas, which build most other elements out of the noble gas Helium.

Re:What's next? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696823)

not going to play a part in chemical reactions under everyday circumstances.

The funny thing, is after some very difficult attempts it took to form the first xenon compounds, confirming it is very difficult to form such compounds, someone realized it could be done a lot easier with just UV light from the sun. Filling a jar with fluorine and xenon gas, leave it in the sun, and you will get xenon fluoride.

Kryptonite! (1)

Chemisor (97276) | about 7 months ago | (#45697171)

It means I can finally synthesize some Kryptonite! Superman, all your base will be mine soon! Bwahahahahaha

Re:What's next? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45699953)

Noble Gas compound in application: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Excimer_laser

Re:What's next? (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 7 months ago | (#45704739)

Do we categorize Argon as a non-noble gas, or do we redefine what a noble gas actually is?

Neither.

A noble element is one that has its valence shell full. That's it. That's why it's in that column of the periodic table.

It doesn't mean it won't react, it's just got less reason to (atoms normally bond to fill up their valence shell with electrons by sharing them with other atoms). That just means that two noble elements are not likely to bond together (no sharing going on). However, that doesn't mean some other element short of electron(s) won't want to bond with a noble element in order to "borrow" its electrons.

ST:TNG: A hair cut can make you look like a... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695165)

We are stardust, we are golden. . . (1)

auric_dude (610172) | about 7 months ago | (#45695203)

And now we are Argon?

Re:We are stardust, we are golden. . . (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 7 months ago | (#45697027)

And my Axis!

If you get to be Argon, I get to be Gimble. Legos anyone?

Uruguay's president José Mujica: no pal (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695281)

Uruguay's president José Mujica: no palace, no motorcade, no frills

In the week that Uruguay legalises cannabis, the 78-year-old explains why he rejects the 'world's poorest president' label

Jonathan Watts in Montevideo
The Guardian, Friday 13 December 2013 13.37 GMT

Article: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/dec/13/uruguay-president-jose-mujica [theguardian.com]
Author: http://www.theguardian.com/profile/jonathanwatts [theguardian.com]

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Image: http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/About/General/2013/12/11/1386784118202/Jos--Mujica-009.jpg [guim.co.uk]

José Mujica, the Uruguayan president, at his house in Montevideo. Photograph: Mario Goldman/AFP/Getty Images

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"If anyone could claim to be leading by example in an age of austerity, it is José Mujica, Uruguay's president, who has forsworn a state palace in favour of a farmhouse, donates the vast bulk of his salary to social projects, flies economy class and drives an old Volkswagen Beetle.

But the former guerrilla fighter is clearly disgruntled by those who tag him "the world's poorest president" and â" much as he would like others to adopt a more sober lifestyle â" the 78-year-old has been in politics long enough to recognise the folly of claiming to be a model for anyone.

"If I asked people to live as I live, they would kill me," Mujica said during an interview in his small but cosy one-bedroom home set amid chrysanthemum fields outside Montevideo.

The president is a former member of the Tupamaros guerrilla group, which was notorious in the early 1970s for bank robberies, kidnappings and distributing stolen food and money among the poor. He was shot by police six times and spent 14 years in a military prison, much of it in dungeon-like conditions.

Since becoming leader of Uruguay in 2010, however, he has won plaudits worldwide for living within his means, decrying excessive consumption and pushing ahead with policies on same-sex marriage, abortion and cannabis legalisation that have reaffirmed Uruguay as the most socially liberal country in Latin America.

Praise has rolled in from all sides of the political spectrum. Mujica may be the only leftwing leader on the planet to win the favour of the Daily Mail, which lauded him as a trustworthy and charismatic figurehead in an article headlined: "Finally, A politician who DOESN'T fiddle his expenses."

But the man who is best known as Pepe says those who consider him poor fail to understand the meaning of wealth. "I'm not the poorest president. The poorest is the one who needs a lot to live," he said. "My lifestyle is a consequence of my wounds. I'm the son of my history. There have been years when I would have been happy just to have a mattress."

He shares the home with his wife, LucÃa Topolansky, a leading member of Congress who has also served as acting president.

As I near the home of Uruguay's first couple, the only security detail is two guards parked on the approach road, and Mujica's three-legged dog, Manuela.

Mujica cuts an impressively unpolished figure. Wearing lived-in clothes and well-used footwear, the bushy-browed farmer who strolls out from the porch resembles an elderly Bilbo Baggins emerging from his Hobbit hole to scold an intrusive neighbour.

In conversation, he exudes a mix of warmth and cantankerousness, idealism about humanity's potential and a weariness with the modern world â" at least outside the eminently sensible shire in which he lives.

He is proud of his homeland â" one of the safest and least corrupt in the region â" and describes Uruguay as "an island of refugees in a world of crazy people".

The country is proud of its social traditions. The government sets prices for essential commodities such as milk and provides free computers and education for every child.

Key energy and telecommunications industries are nationalised. Under Mujica's predecessor, Uruguay led the world in moves to restrict tobacco consumption. Earlier this week, it passed the world's most sweeping marijuana regulation law, which will give the state a major role in the legal production, distribution and sale of the drug.

Such actions have won praise and â" along with progressive policies on abortion and gay marriage â" strengthened Uruguay's reputation as a liberal country. But Mujica is almost as reluctant to accept this tag as he is to agree with the "poorest president" label.

"My country is not particularly open. These measures are logical," he said. "With marijuana, this is not about being more liberal. We want to take users away from clandestine dealers. But we will also restrict their right to smoke if they exceed sensible amounts of consumption. It is like alcohol. If you drink a bottle of whisky a day, then you should be treated as a sick person."

Uruguay's options to improve society are limited, he believes, by the power of global capital.

"I'm just sick of the way things are. We're in an age in which we can't live without accepting the logic of the market," he said. "Contemporary politics is all about short-term pragmatism. We have abandoned religion and philosophy ⦠What we have left is the automatisation of doing what the market tells us."

The president lives within his means and promotes the use of renewable energy and recycling in his government's policies. At the United Nations' Rio+20 conference on sustainable development last year, he railed against the "blind obsession" to achieve growth through greater consumption. But, with Uruguay's economy ticking along at a growth rate of more than 3%, Mujica â" somewhat grudgingly, it seems â" accepts he must deliver material expansion. "I'm president. I'm fighting for more work and more investment because people ask for more and more," he said. "I am trying to expand consumption but to diminish unnecessary consumption ⦠I'm opposed to waste â" of energy, or resources, or time. We need to build things that last. That's an ideal, but it may not be realistic because we live in an age of accumulation."

Asked for a solution to this contradiction, the president admits he doesn't have the answers, but the former Marxist said the search for a solution must be political. "We can almost recycle everything now. If we lived within our means â" by being prudent â" the 7 billion people in the world could have everything they needed. Global politics should be moving in that direction," he said. "But we think as people and countries, not as a species."

Mujica and his wife chat fondly about meetings with Che Guevara, and the president guesses he is probably the last leader in power to have met Mao Zedong, but he has mixed feelings about the recent revolts and protests in Brazil, Turkey, Egypt and elsewhere. "The world will always need revolution. That doesn't mean shooting and violence. A revolution is when you change your thinking. Confucianism and Christianity were both revolutionary," he said.

But he is cynical about demonstrations organised by social networks that quickly dissolve before they have a capacity to build anything lasting. "The protesters will probably finish up working for multinationals and dying of modern diseases. I hope that I am wrong about that."
Life history
Shot, arrested, jailed and elected

1969 Active in the Tupamaros revolutionary group, which earned a reputation as the "Robin Hood guerrillas" by robbing delivery trucks and banks and distributing the food and money among the poor.

1970 Arrested for the first of four times. Mujica escapes Punta Carretas prison in a daring jailbreak. Shot and wounded numerous times in conflicts with security forces.

1972 Imprisoned again. Remains in jail for more than a decade, including two years' solitary confinement at the bottom of a well, where he speaks to frogs and insects to maintain his sanity.

1985 Constitutional democracy is restored in Uruguay and Mujica is released under an amnesty law.

1994 Elected deputy and arrives at the parliament building on a Vespa scooter. A surprised parking attendant asks: "Are you going to be here long?" Mujica replies: "I certainly hope so."

2009 Wins presidential election. Only words to the media that day: "Despite all this lip service, the world is not going to change." Adopts a ruling style closer to centre-left administrations of Lula in Brazil and Bachelet in Chile, rather than harder-left leaders such as Hugo ChÃvez.

2012 Lauded for a speech at the UN's Rio+20 global sustainability conference in which he calls for a fight against the hyper-consumption that is destroying the environment. "The cause is the model of civilization that we have created. And the thing we have to re-examine is our way of life."

2012 Announces that the presidential palace would be included among the state shelters for the homeless. Meanwhile, Mujica continues to live in his small farmhouse outside Montevideo.

2013 Mujica's government pushes the world's most progressive cannabis legalisation bill through Congress. "This is not about being free and open. It's a logical step. We want to take users away from clandestine business," he says.

Additional reporting by Mauricio Rabuffetti"

© 2013 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved.

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Links within article (excluding the photo) not included here

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So now it's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45695457)

Argone.

xenon not so noble either (2)

Gothmolly (148874) | about 7 months ago | (#45695509)

xenon will combine with halogens. anything will combine with anything, you just need enough juice.

Re:xenon not so noble either (2)

hardtofindanick (1105361) | about 7 months ago | (#45696659)

Still trying to figure out if that is a dirty comment.

Re:xenon not so noble either (1)

Nivag064 (904744) | about 7 months ago | (#45696731)

I got a shock 50 years ago, when I read an article about xenon compounds when I was 13. My background reading had given me the impression that the 'noble' elements did not form compounds.

Note, once (same school year) I was meant to have read a chapter on Calcium for Chemistry homework, which I didn't read - but my background reading was sufficient, so that everybody implicitly assumed that I had read that chapter very well!

Re:xenon not so noble either (1)

jeffb (2.718) (1189693) | about 7 months ago | (#45697055)

I was quite some time behind you, but the libraries I was borrowing from were even further behind. I learned about the nobles from one of Asimov's excellent non-fiction popular chemistry books, and from a 1950s edition of Britannica. I was thrilled when I found out that compounds actually existed.

Re:xenon not so noble either (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45698589)

Note, once (same school year) I was meant to have read a chapter on Calcium for Chemistry homework, which I didn't read - but my background reading was sufficient, so that everybody implicitly assumed that I had read that chapter very well!

And I once scored four touchdowns in one game!

Those were the days...

Re:xenon not so noble either (4, Informative)

jeffb (2.718) (1189693) | about 7 months ago | (#45697033)

Anything will combine with anything -- it just won't stay combined. You can rip as many electrons off (say) neon as you like, throw it in with another species, and watch them stick together long enough for neon to nab the electrons it wants -- but you won't get a compound that persists. Similarly, you can force xenon and anything together, but only a few pairings will produce compounds stable at even cryogenic temperatures.

One does not simply.... (1)

wbr1 (2538558) | about 7 months ago | (#45695623)

...declare me to not be noble. Denethor be damned.
Oh, wait, argon, not Aragorn.

Impossible (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696285)

We can only explore space by going there in person directly. None of this 0.1 Earth radius up nonsense either.

C0m (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45696585)

in eter8ity...Romeo approximately 90% may do, may not become obsessed Won't be standing And that the floor engineering project would choose to use progress. Any fear the reaper perspective, the Cycle; take a You got there. Or

I feel so betray (1)

DarkOx (621550) | about 7 months ago | (#45696765)

Can't anything live up to its promise

This summary is unhelpful. (4, Informative)

dandelionblue (2757475) | about 7 months ago | (#45697119)

The significant parts of this discovery are:

- a noble gas has been found in space (this confirmed people's expectations that argon-36 could be found as part of a supernova, even though argon-40 is much more common on Earth - note that argon-36 is also available on Earth, just in smaller quantities, it's not a new isotope)
- a noble gas molecule has been found in space (previously, argon compounds were only detected following Earth-based lab experiments)

The significant part of this discovery is not:

- that a noble gas can form a compound. Argon has had known compounds since 2003. Xenon has had known compounds since 1962, some of which are even stable at normal room temperature/pressure.

Noble gas molecular ions have long been known (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45700341)

Argon molecular ions were known well before that. The helium analogue, HeH+, was discovered in 1925!

Give Argon A Break... (4, Funny)

krisamico (452786) | about 7 months ago | (#45697789)

... It's not always easy to be noble under extreme conditions. Happens to the best of us!

Wisdom follows, pay attention! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45702049)

> No Longer "Noble"; Argon Compound Found In Space

Typical Bitcoin fanboy phraseology, trying to spread FUD. In fact, gold is still a noble metal, even though it can be dissolved in "acqua regia". Similarly Argon Hydride (ArH) will not make argon less noble at all!

Beknighted Then? (1)

tmjva (226065) | about 7 months ago | (#45705091)

Well, if it is no longer of the Nobility, can it least get a peerage with a Knighthood?

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