Wikijunior:The Elements/Radon

Shows the position of radon on the periodic chart.
Radon's symbol on the Periodic Table
Radon detector

What does it look, feel, taste, or smell like? Edit

Radon is an invisible, odorless gas. You can't see, smell, or taste it.

How was it discovered? Edit

Radon was discovered in 1900 by Friedrich Ernst Dorn. Dorn originally called the gas "radium emanation". The gas was later called "niton", and, in 1923, it became "radon". It was named after the element radium.

Where did its name come from? Edit

Radon was named for radium, another element, which decays (breaks down) into it.

Did You Know?

  • Radon is the heaviest noble gas.
  • It was originally called radium emanation.
  • Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer (after tobacco smoking.)

Where is it found? Edit

Radon test kit

Radon makes up a small part of the air. It naturally comes up from the ground. It is released from the decay of uranium in rocks and soil. Radon is created when radium in the earth's crust decays.

What are its uses? Edit

It is used to treat some forms of cancer, and is also used in earthquake prediction.

Is it dangerous? Edit

Radon is highly radioactive. Based on studies carried out by the National Academy of Sciences in the United States, radon is the second most common cause of lung cancer, after tobacco smoking. Homes need to be regularly tested for it.

References Edit