Disulfur decafluoride - Even awesome gas can't make Leno funny

The above is a video of Jay Leno (I'm a Letterman guy myself) and some dude playing with a gas called sulfur hexafluoride. It has no colour or odour and is neither toxic nor flammable. It's also denser than air, which means you can pour it into containers and float things on top of it and stuff. While this is, admittedly, pretty nifty, it also appears to have little to do with D&P. Fret not, oh reader, for if you pass high-voltage electricity through this impressively innocuous gas, it can decompose to produce disulfur decafluoride, a highly toxic phosgene-like pulmonary agent. A potential chemical weapon. Since sulfur hexafluoride is used as an insulator in electrical things like switchgear and transformers, it potentially poses a risk to lineworkers and electricians.


0 chemically inspired comments: