Friday, 5 July 2013
Krypton is name of the fictional home planet of Superman currently in the local cinemas as the Man of Steel.
Krypton is a chemical element with symbol Kr and atomic number 36. It is a member of group 18 (noble gases) elements. A colourless, odourless, tasteless noble gas, krypton occurs in trace amounts in the atmosphere, is isolated by fractionally distilling liquified air, and is often used with other rare gases in fluorescent lamps. Krypton is inert for most practical purposes.
Krypton gas discharge tube
Krypton was discovered in Britain in 1898 by Sir William Ramsay, a Scottish chemist, and Morris Travers, an English chemist, in residue left from evaporating nearly all components of liquid air. Neon was discovered by a similar procedure by the same workers just a few weeks later. William Ramsay was awarded the 1904 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for discovery of a series of noble gases, including krypton.
Krypton is characterized by several sharp emission lines (spectral signatures) the strongest being green and yellow. It is one of the products of uranium fission. Solidified krypton is white and crystalline with a face-centered cubic crystal structure, which is a common property of all noble gases (except helium, with a hexagonal close-packed crystal structure).
Kryptonite on the other hand is a fictional form of a radioactive element from Superman's home planet of Krypton. It is famous for being the ultimate natural weakness of Superman and most other Kryptonians, and the word Kryptonite has since become synonymous with an Achilles' heel—the one weakness of an otherwise invulnerable hero. In the Superman films Kryptonite is green although the original stores there were many colour variations.
Superman's worst nightmare!