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Helium
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Helium
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He
Helium

Physical Properties

Under solid (grey), liquid (blue) and vapor states (white) along the equilibrium curves

  • General properties
  • Solid phase
  • Liquid Phase
  • Gas Phase
(P)
log(P)
Download
  • Molecular weight
    4.003
    g/mol
  • Content in air
    5.24
    ppm
    5.24 ppm 5.24E-4 vol/% 5.24E-6 vol/vol

Critical Point

  • Temperature
    - 267.95
    °C
    - 450.31 °F 5.2 K
  • Pressure
    2.275
    bar
    2.275E5 pa 32.9961 lbf/in2 2.2453 Atm 227.5 Kpa 1706.395 mmHg
  • Density
    69.641
    kg/m³
    4.3475 lb/ft³

Triple Point

  • Temperature
    - 270.97
    °C
    - 455.746 °F 2.18 K
  • Pressure
    5.042E-2
    bar
    5042 pa 7.3128E-1 lbf/in2 4.9761E-2 Atm 5.042 Kpa 37.8182 mmHg
Pressure 1.013 bar
  • Melting point
    - 271.38
    °C
    - 456.484 °F 1.77 K
  • Latent heat of fusion (at melting point)
    12.492
    kJ/kg
    5.3742 Btu/lb 2.9857 kcal/kg
  • Solid density
    /
Pressure 1.013 bar
  • Liquid density
    124.74
    kg/m³
    7.7872 lb/ft³
  • Boiling point
    - 268.93
    °C
    - 452.074 °F 4.22 K
  • Latent heat of vaporization (at boiling point)
    20.754
    kJ/kg
    8.9286 Btu/lb 4.9603 kcal/kg
Pressure1.013barTemperature
  • Compressibility factor Z
    1.0005
    1.0005
    1.0005
  • Cp/Cv ratio γ
    1.6665
    1.6665
    1.6665
  • Dynamic viscosity
    1.8695E-4
    Po
    18.695 µPa.s 1.8695E-5 PA.S 1.2562E-5 lb/ft/s
    1.9388E-4
    Po
    19.388 µPa.s 1.9388E-5 PA.S 1.3028E-5 lb/ft/s
    1.9846E-4
    Po
    19.846 µPa.s 1.9846E-5 PA.S 1.3336E-5 lb/ft/s
  • Gas density at boiling point
    16.752
    kg/m³
    1.0458 lb/ft³
    16.752
    kg/m³
    1.0458 lb/ft³
    16.752
    kg/m³
    1.0458 lb/ft³
  • Gas density
    1.784E-1
    kg/m³
    1.1137E-2 lb/ft³
    1.692E-1
    kg/m³
    1.0563E-2 lb/ft³
    1.635E-1
    kg/m³
    1.0207E-2 lb/ft³
  • Heat capacity at constant pressure Cp
    5.1931
    kJ/(kg.K)
    1.2412 BTU/lb∙°F 5193.124 J/kg∙K 1.2412 kcal/kg∙K
    5.1929
    kJ/(kg.K)
    1.2411 BTU/lb∙°F 5192.875 J/kg∙K 1.2411 kcal/kg∙K
    5.1929
    kJ/(kg.K)
    1.2411 BTU/lb∙°F 5192.875 J/kg∙K 1.2411 kcal/kg∙K
  • Heat capacity at constant volume Cv
    3.116
    kJ/(kg.K)
    7.4474E-1 BTU/lb∙°F 3115.975 J/kg∙K 7.4474E-1 kcal/kg∙K
    3.116
    kJ/(kg.K)
    7.4474E-1 BTU/lb∙°F 3115.975 J/kg∙K 7.4474E-1 kcal/kg∙K
    3.116
    kJ/(kg.K)
    7.4474E-1 BTU/lb∙°F 3115.975 J/kg∙K 7.4474E-1 kcal/kg∙K
  • Liquid (at boiling point)/gas equivalent
    699.06
    mol/mol
    737.41
    mol/mol
    762.98
    mol/mol
  • Solubility in water
    /
    7.123E-6
    mol/mol
    6.997E-6
    mol/mol
  • Specific gravity
    0.14
    0.14
    0.14
  • Specific volume
    5.604
    m³/kg
    89.7674 ft³/lb
    5.9116
    m³/kg
    94.6947 ft³/lb
    6.1166
    m³/kg
    97.9785 ft³/lb
  • Thermal conductivity
    146.2
    mW/m∙K
    8.4529E-2 Btu/ft/h/°F 1.2579 cal/hour∙cm∙°C 3.4943E-4 cal/s∙cm∙°C 1.462E-1 W/(m∙K)
    151.69
    mW/m∙K
    8.7703E-2 Btu/ft/h/°F 1.3052 cal/hour∙cm∙°C 3.6255E-4 cal/s∙cm∙°C 1.5169E-1 W/(m∙K)
    155.31
    mW/m∙K
    8.9796E-2 Btu/ft/h/°F 1.3363 cal/hour∙cm∙°C 3.712E-4 cal/s∙cm∙°C 1.5531E-1 W/(m∙K)
  • Vapor pressure
    /
    /
    /
He
Helium

Liquid / Gas Volumes

Calculate a liquid or gas volume or a mass

Liquid Phase

At boiling point at 1.013 bar

m3(Volume)
kg(Mass)

Gas Phase

at 1.013 bar and boiling point

m3(Volume)
kg(Mass)
He
Helium

Applications

Examples of uses of this molecule in Industry and Healthcare

Space

A liquid helium subsystem allows pressurization of the oxygen tank of Ariane 5 launch vehicle.

Space

Automotive

Helium is used to inflate car airbags. It is also used for laser welding and arc welding.

Automotive

Electronic components

Helium allows temperature and uniformity control during etching and anneal process. It is also used as carrier gas for some Chemical Vapor Deposition process using liquid precursors.

Electronic components

Hospital care

Drug: helium is used to assist oxygen flow in case of respiratory obstruction. It is a component of inhaled gaseous mixtures such as for pulmonary function test. Medical device: helium is used during cryoablation procedures.

Hospital care

Laboratories & Research Centers

Helium is the most commonly used carrier gas in gas chromatography. It is also used as cooling fluid for the MRI, NMR or EPR magnets under liquid state at -452.2 °F (-269 °C,4.15 K).

Laboratories & Research Centers

Metal

Helium is used in some laboratories and leakage detection applications.

Metal

Metal fabrication

Helium is used in laser welding and arc welding.

Metal fabrication

Oil & Gas

Helium is used in diving and IMR (Inspection, Maintenance & Repair) work achieved subsea for oil & gas offshore operations.

Oil & Gas

Pharma & Biotech

Helium is used for leak test on process equipment.

Pharma & Biotech

Other

Helium is used to inflate balloons for parties, becoming lighter than the air. It is used to detect leaks. It also allows to cool superconducting magnets. It is used in helium-neon lasers and in mixtures for carbon dioxide lasers. Helium allows to exclude air from fabrication processes (blanket gas). It is also used to transfer heat in some processes.

He
Helium

Safety

Information to safely use this molecule

  • Major hazards
  • Material compatibility
  • GHS04
    Gas under pressure

Odor

none

Metals

  • Aluminium
    Satisfactory
  • Brass
    Satisfactory
  • Monel
    Satisfactory
  • Copper
    Satisfactory
  • Ferritic Steel
    Satisfactory
  • Stainless steel
    Satisfactory
  • Zinc
    Satisfactory
  • Titanium
    no data

Plastics

  • Polytetrafluoroethylene
    Acceptable
    strong rate of permeation
  • Polychlorotrifluoroethylene
    Satisfactory
  • Polyvinylidene fluoride
    Satisfactory
  • Polyvinyl chloride
    Satisfactory
  • Ethylene tetrafluoroethylene
    Satisfactory
  • Polycarbonate
    Satisfactory
  • Polyamide
    Satisfactory
  • Polypropylene
    Acceptable
    strong rate of permeation

Elastomers

  • Buthyl (isobutene- isoprene) rubber
    Satisfactory
  • Nitrile rubber
    Satisfactory
  • Chloroprene
    Satisfactory
  • Chlorofluorocarbons
    Satisfactory
  • Silicon
    Acceptable
    strong rate of permeation
  • Perfluoroelastomers
    Satisfactory
  • Fluoroelastomers
    Satisfactory
  • Nitrile rubber
    Satisfactory
  • Neoprene
    Satisfactory
  • Polyurethane
    Satisfactory
  • Ethylene-Propylene
    Satisfactory

Lubricants

  • Hydrocarbon based lubricant
    Satisfactory
  • Fluorocarbon based lubricant
    Satisfactory

Materials compatibility

Recommendations : Air Liquide has gathered data on the compatibility of gases with materials to assist you in evaluating which materials to use for a gas system. Although the information has been compiled from what Air Liquide believes are reliable sources (International Standards: Compatibility of cylinder and valve materials with gas content; Part 1- Metallic materials: ISO11114-1 (March 2012), Part 2 - Non-metallic materials: ISO11114-2 (April 2013), it must be used with extreme caution and engineering judgement. No raw data such as these can cover all conditions of concentration, temperature, humidity, impurities and aeration. It is therefore recommended that this table is only used to identify possible materials for applications at high pressure and ambient temperature. Extensive investigation and testing under the specific conditions of use need to be carried out to validate a material selection for a given application. Contact the regional Air Liquide team for expertise service.

He
Helium

Learn More

General information

More information

Helium was discovered in 1868 by Jules Janssen. Its name comes from the Greek "ἥλιος" (helios) meaning "sun". Helium is abundant in the sun's atmosphere and is found at trace levels in Earth's atmosphere. However, it may also be found in fossil form in natural gas pockets in some oil fields, extracted by drilling deep into the subsoil. Helium is an extremely light gas and is therefore very volatile. It is colorless, odorless, non-flammable and completely inert.