Carbon is a very useful element. In our daily life, we unknowingly use many things that are made of Carbon. So this is important to know at least something about Carbon. These fast facts will be very useful for students to grow their knowledge about Carbon.
Interesting Fast Facts About Carbon for Student
Fact 1: Carbon is the fourth most abundant element in the Universe after hydrogen, helium, and oxygen. Most of it was originally made inside stars.
Fact 2: The word ‘carbon’ comes from the Latin word carbo, meaning ‘charcoal‘.
Fact 3: Carbon atoms have space for four electrons in their outer shells, so carbon forms over ten million compounds.
Fact 4: Pure carbon occurs in five major allotropes (forms). These are diamond, graphite, amorphous carbon, fullerenes, and carbon nanotubes.
Fact 5: Carbon is the basic element that is found in all the living organisms like plants, animals, algae, etc, and also the food we eat.
Fact 6: Carbon black was probably one of the first pigments to be used for tattooing, and Otzi the Iceman was found to have carbon tattoos that survived during his life and for 5200 years after his death.
Fact 7: Diamond, graphite, and amorphous carbon form naturally, While fullerenes and carbon nanotubes are mostly created artificially.
Fact 8: Diamond is the hardest-natura] substance on Earth. Natural diamonds were made deep in the Earth billions of years ago. They were formed by huge pressures as the Earth’s crust moved and then brought nearer the surface by volcanic activity.
Fact 9: Diamonds are made from incredibly strong networks of carbon atoms, each joined to four others in a tetrahedral (pyramidal) arrangement.
Fact 10: diamond dust used as an abrasive can do harm if ingested or inhaled.
Fact 11: Scientists can make tough new forms of carbon called fullerenes by knitting together carbon atoms in balls and nanotubes.
Fact 12: The hardness of diamonds comes from the very strong tetrahedron (three-sided pyramid) patterns that the carbon atoms are arranged in.
Fact 13: Carbon has the highest melting point of all elements. The melting point of the diamond is about. 3550°C, but it usually sublimes (goes straight from solid to gas), at around 3800°C.
Fact 14: Graphite is the black carbon used in pencils. Its atoms are arranged in sheets that slide over each other, so it is quite soft.
Fact 15: By carbon dating, scientists identify the age of fossils.
Fact 16: Amorphous carbon is the black soot residue that is left behind when candles and other objects burn.
Fact 17: Fullerenes are big molecules made of 60 or more carbon atoms linked together in a tight cylinder or ball. The first was made in 1985. They were named after the American architect R Buckminster Fuller, who designed a geodesic (Earth-shaped) dome that is constructed on the same structural principles.
Fact 18: Carbon nanotubes are tubes of carbon atoms measuring a few nanometres across. (A nanometre is a billionth of a meter.)
Fact 19: Carbon nanotubes are 20 times as strong as steel, and can bend and conduct electricity 1000 times better than copper .
Fact 20: In the future carbon nanotubes may be used to make the ultimate small computers, or to make a lift to an orbiting space station.