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What Exactly IS Argon Gas?

What Exactly IS Argon Gas?

Using Argon gas as an additive to a window can greatly improve the thermal performance of the product. Filling the space between the layers, or panes of glass, with a nonreactive, dense gas decreases the convection currents that take place in that space. Because Argon gas is inert, it is also slow-moving, which helps reduce the transfer of heat from inside and outside, making the product much more energy efficient.

Argon, Ar, ranks third among the most common gases in the atmosphere of the Earth. It is more common than carbon dioxide. Argon is odorless, colorless, and nontoxic as a gas, liquid, and even as a solid. Argon is inert, or nonreactive, meaning that is not readily modified by a biological or chemical reaction. Even it’s name, which comes from the Greek word αργος , means “inactive”.

Argon is 25% more dense than air, making it a viable option for filling the gap between the panes of glass within a window in order to reduce heat and sound transfer through the window. There are varying reasons why argon is used in particular applications (such as window manufacturing):

  1. An inert gas is desired. Specifically, argon is the least expensive option when other gases are not adequately inert. It’s nonreactive properties appeal to manufacturers who create products designed to go in the home (ie, windows)/li>

  2. Low thermal conductivity, or amount of direct transfer of heat through the windows to the outside, is needed. Argon helps promote energy efficiency when used in products like windows!

Other noble gases would probably work as well in most of these applications, but argon is by far the least expensive option available. Why does Argon cost so little? Argon is inexpensive because it is a by-product of the manufacturing of liquid oxygen and liquid nitrogen. Because liquid oxygen and liquid nitrogen are used in large, industrial amounts, sizeable amounts of by-products are available. Other noble gases (not including helium) are also created in this manner, but Argon is the most abundant due to its superior concentration within our atmosphere. Manufacturing using Argon is most common because it is nonreactive and relatively cheap. Using an inactive gas like Argon in windows allows homeowners themselves to be more active within their homes, without having to fear the loss of energy.

For more information regarding glass options and products, contact FAS Windows Doors at 1-888-422-1960. If you have any questions you’d like to submit online, you can always ask our FAS expert ! Call us today to schedule your FREE in-home estimate!

Katie Pettit 9/21/2010

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