OPEN THREAD 20191230

Basically, all legal free speech is allowed. We will assist the authorities in dealing with illegal speech. You are each other’s moderators. Have fun. And don’t forget to MAGA at nuclear levels.

Citizen U

Day 54 – XENON.

18 thoughts on “OPEN THREAD 20191230

  1. I’ve got a pair of Xenon nightlights in the lightwell in my kitchen that have become intermittent. Since the bulbs seem to work sometimes, I’m thinking it’s the ballasts.

    Then, again, we put them in the kitchen so that the godkids could get snacks in the middle of the night when they visited…..and they’ve all been off to college for a while….and haven’t visited for years…..***sigh***

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  2. Xenon is a “noble gas” — which pretty much means it doesn’t react with anything. That said, the very first noble gas compound to be synthesized was xenon hexafluoroplatinate in 1962………..maybe. Attempts to replicate the experiment’s results coughed up [XeF]+[PtF5]−, [XeF]+[Pt2F11]−, and [Xe2F3]+[PtF6]− …..but no actual Xe+[PtF6]− (which is probably a good thing between the thought of a Xe+ roaming around in a field of F- without bonding is kind of weird).

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  3. The general form of a laser involves a cavity that is sealed on its sides, reflective on one end, and semi-reflective on the other. You pump energy into it, and the energy starts oscillating back and forth between the reflectors. Once it develops a standing wave-ish structure, it starts sloshing through the semi-reflector with coherent light — a laser beam.

    Xenon has long been associated with lasers. The first solid-state laser, invented in 1960, was “pumped” by xenon flash bulbs. In 1970, “excimer lasers” were developed which, essentially, rely on nonexistant molecules — you load up a tube with Xe and F2, and pretend you were going to lase with a molecule of XeF. After you successfully get the right laser beam, you can disassemble your apparatus and find no XeF. It only existed when lasing.


  4. It should be noted that Xenon compounds tend to be comprised of things like halogens or oxygen [I WANT EVERYTHING!!!!] and Xenon [meh]. As such, they tend to fall apart with the slightest encouragement, which leaves the highly reactive other part free to ravage the countryside.

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  5. This next piece is a “novelty piano solo” from 1923 that is frequently described as ragtime….

    It is not “classic” ragtime — although the Joplin piece I put up a while back wasn’t either. This is very close to a “Tin Pan Alley” work…….although, with talent.

    Zez Confrey’s most famous work was “Kitten on the Keys”, which has its own charms.

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  6. There once was a man from Racine,
    Whose mind was exceedingly clean.
    When once, just by luck,
    He tried rhyming “a duck”,
    He could only come up with ……….


  7. A sample of xenon gas (or any of the other noble gases) is transparent, so it would like like an empty glass tube.

    However, if you can set it up to pass an electrical arc, you can prove it has xenon in it by the color of the light, particularly if you can pass it through a spectroscope and note the pattern of the emission lines.

    There is a company in the UK that used to sell a set of five lights, all tubes in the forms of the element symbols (He, Ne, Ar, Kr, Xe), that would light up in alternation. They still, apparently make that but it comes as part of a much larger periodic table display:

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      1. Never got to play with that.

        I’ve got the money NOW, and would seriously love to buy the set of five noble gas lights, but I don’t know if they make those any more.


        1. Make ’em and sell ’em yourself.

          Incidentally, the “bits of string and a dead budgie” are from Monty Python’s village idiot sketch, which seems to have been vacuumed up into copyright. I’d research it further, but I need to be ready for tomorrow’s “falling-off-a-wall” lessons.

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Regards the gov of TX and his easing of firearm restrictions that probably saved many lives in the church shooting: when we “allow” the government to bestow rights (“allow” people to carry in church?), and when we accept a Republican governor who “allows” firearms carry; and when that state is TEXAS! I know we are in trouble!

    Have we learned nothing from the tyranny of Obama; likewise the tyranny of the impeachment committee hearings? Rights are bestowed, governor Abbott, by our Creator, and not by the likes of men.

    In a similar vein, what’s with Ivanka Trump and her embrace of a new Democrat family paid leave entitlement (which will raise taxes and require a huge bureaucracy to carry out)? I don’t like statist co-presidents!

    Thank you, Wolf, for having this site. Happy New Year to all on this board.

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