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Sulfur Presentation

Presentation on sulfur, discovery, formation, and uses
by

Daniel Wilcox

on 22 November 2010

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Transcript of Sulfur Presentation

The Brimstone of Chemistry Ok, that might have been a little overzealous an introduction,
but now I have your attention dont I?
On to the real introduction... Sulfur, an element associated in ancient times with doomsday myths, it is also a very common and extremely important element. From supporting life to explosives, sulfur is both useful and critical. An example of what sulfur looks like in its natural state is coming up... This is what sulfur looks like in its stable powder form, at room temperature. It is however, found in other forms in nature as well. But, before we get too carried away with these details, a history of sulfur is up next. The name sulfur originates from the latin word sulfur, the middle english word sulfre, which meant "brimstone", and the Sanscrit word, Sulvere. The ancient word for sulfur was spelt as sulphur. Sulfur (S) The history of sulfur is truly ancient. Its existence has been known since before the era of the Greeks and Romans, however they did not view it as an element as we do today. The name however, has not varied very much over thousands of years, with terms for Brimstone and Sulfur being interchanged through the eras and places. Sulfur in ancient times was mostly associated with dark and evil things (mythologically) due to its smell when burned, and indeed the smell it gives off naturally. Its occurence around volcanoes may have also led to the biblical views of "fire and brimstone". In the bible, the smell of sulfur is typically associated with the devil, or evil, on some level. Due to the fact that it is found above ground in many places and in good concentration, the first true "discovery" of sulfur is impossible to pinpoint. The closest anyone can aproximate to the actual discovery of sulfur dates back to 1777, and our good friend, Antoine Lavoisier, who convinced the scientific community that sulfur was indeed an element, and not a compound, as was thought at the time. Sulfur was also known as early as the 6th century B.C. in China, also known as Shiliuhuang. Knowledge of this aided the Chinese in their early discovery and use of gunpowder. Introduction History Properties Sulfur takes the state of an insoluble solid at room temperature. It can be found naturally in crystalline form and also can take the form of a stable powder at room temperature. It is bright yellow and soft.

The boiling point of Sulfur is: 444.6C

The melting point of Sulfur is: 112.8C

The density of Sulfur is:
2.07g/cm^3 at 293K There are 5 isotopes of Sulfur, and 4 are stable.
S-35 has a halflife of 87.2 days. Isotopes of sulfur have been used to determine pollution levels in mountains and wetlands. It has also been known to be used to identify the importance of certain food sources to animals, such as Grizzly Bears consumption of pine nuts, as seen a study published by the Canadian Journal of Zoology The Above image shows Sulfur melting into a blood red colour, the other image (bottom) shows sulfur burning a blue/white color Sulfur isotopes are also commonly used to understand the formation of Sulfur ore deposits. This can help determine if the deposit was formed sedimentally by a biogenic process (bacterial reduction of marine sulfate), or sulfur formed by an igneous process. Availability Sulfur is fairly commonly found, both globally and in the Milky Way galaxy. It is the 10th most common element in the known universe and easily encountered on earth.

The range of places it is found on earth range from underground mines to surface deposits. Sulfur is also found deep in the ocean coming out of the ocean floor. Hot springs and volcanic sources commonly produce sulfur. These images are of sulfur miners in Indonesia, at Kawah Ijen volcano. The molten sulfur is is collected by them as it comes out of pipes and cools. They then carry the sulfur down the volcano several miles and sell it for about $5.00 U.S. dollars. The process is highly manual in nature with little protection used or offered. Sulfur is typically obtained through one of two methods. One is the Frasching method. This process involves tunneling three pipes (one inside the other) down to a sulfur deposit. Water is heated to a point well above sulfurs boiling point and pumped down the outermost pipe. Preassuriesed air is pumped down through the middle pipe, and these two forces act to push the melted sulfur up to the surface.

The other commonly used method of sulfur extraction is called the sicilian method. It is used cheifly for extracting sulfur from ores, and the process involves igniting the ores, melting most of the sulfur and then collecting it as it runs out of the ores. The current price of sulfur stands at $5.95 per pound, found on the dbcpyrotechnics website. Generally the price ranges between $650 and $1100 per lb. The prices fluctuate largely however, as in 2008 they reached record highs, and plummeted in 2009 as global demaind dropped. Uses The uses of sulfur are enormous in nature. From its role in the human body to creating steel and some of the most potent acids known, sulfur is there. In fact, sulfur appears to be everywhere, which is not much of a surprise given how common it is in the universe There are no exceedingly large number of uses for elemental sulfur. Most elemental uses are related to the sulfur baths metioned previously. However, that is not to say that elemental sulfur is not important. In fact, sulfur is present in all of our cells, and in most living things Sulfur is present in the amino acids Cysteine and Methionine, which are important in protein assembly. Disulfide bonds help form a very strong link between peptide chains which is critical for the stability of protiens. Sulfur is also present in Glycoproteins, which is critical to bones, muscles, and tendons. The most common use of sulfur is in its varying compounds. The most common and used compound made of sulfur is sulfuric acid (H_2_SO_4). It is produced industrially and used for everything from the formation of steel to the purification of carbon nanotubes. Sulfur is used to create gunpowder, a compound that has had a profound effect through history, mostly used in weapons, typically bullets. Sulfur is also widely used in explosives manufacturing, the vulcanization of rubber, and pesticides. Sulfur is also used as a lubricant in the form of Molybdenum Disulfide, a dry lubricant used to lubricate metals. Its composition is MoS_2 And that ^^ is why we wear goggles in lab. Sulfur is an essential engredient in the ever lovable stinkbomb, which produces that well known smell of rotten eggs, caused by the gas H_2_S Cool... This video shows the
solidification of molten
sulfur into crystalline form The structure of a sulfur crystal Sulfur in natural crystalline form Natural sulfur deposits Our good friend Antoine Lavoisier Sulfur Dioxide is produced by the burning of Carbons, coal and petroleum for example, and it is also expelled by volcanoes. It is a highly noxious and odorous gas that also plays a part in pollution. Important Fact: Image of sulfur crystals, for sale. Found online for 100 Euros. Supposedly originated at an italian sulfur mine. Bibliography http://wwwrcamnl.wr.usgs.gov/isoig/period/s_iig.html http://www.italianminerals.com/ITALY/Sulfur-2005.html New research is being undertaken into what may be the next big thing in batteries, lithium sulfur. These batteries could possible extend the density from current lithium ions to five times what they are today for lithium sulfur. http://green.autoblog.com/2009/05/18/could-a-lithium-sulfer-be-the-next-big-battery-breakthrough/ http://www.nrmsc.usgs.gov/files/norock/products/Felicetti_whitebark_pine_nuts.pdf http://www.infoplease.com/ce6/sci/A0861346.html http://www.boston.com/bigpicture/2009/06/sulfur_mining_in_kawah_ijen.html http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/sulfur-000328.htm http://www.chemicool.com/elements/sulfur.html http://www.imoa.info/moly_uses/moly_compounds/lubricants.html http://chemistry.about.com/od/historyofchemistry/a/gunpowder.htm http://www.madsci.org/posts/archives/1999-07/932392966.Me.r.html http://periodic.lanl.gov/elements/16.html http://www.chemistryexplained.com/elements/P-T/Sulfur.html http://www.georgiagulfsulfur.com/history.htm Cepa (Rus) Schwefel (Ge) Azufre (Spa) http://environmentalchemistry.com/yogi/periodic/S.html http://www.infoplease.com/ce6/sci/A0861347.html http://chemistry.about.com/od/elementfacts/a/sulfur.htm http://www.dbcpyrotechnics.com/servlet/the-544/Sulfur--dsh--Price-per/Detail http://www.chemicalelements.com/elements/s.html http://news.alibaba.com/article/detail/chemical/100229219-1-china-sulfur-cost-price-%25288.html http://minerals.usgs.gov/minerals/pubs/commodity/sulfur/mcs-2010-sulfu.pdf Cool Stuff These images are of Io, the innermost of the Galilean moons and one of the largest moons of Jupiter. It is largely volcanic and its orange hue is caused largely by sulfur deposits. The image to the right shows what is believed to be a newly discovered sulfur flow from volcanic activity. China, the other "discoverer" of sulfur Funny Fact: Hugo Chavez once spoke at the UN and mentioned the speaking floor smelled like sulfur...after George bush had spoken there.
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