Skip to comments.Not just Party City: Why helium shortages worry scientists and researchers
Posted on 05/18/2019 12:23:47 PM PDT by EdnaMode
This months announcement from Party City that its closing more than 40 stores as it grapples with new challenges, including diminishing helium supplies, likely came as unwelcome news to customers who count on the store for their balloon and event planning needs.
But for scientists like Mark Elsesser, the announcement was something of a relief, inflating hopes that the public, and the government, might start paying closer attention.
When it comes to helium, were at a tipping point, said Elsesser, who is the associate director of government affairs at the American Physical Society, a nonprofit association of physicists. Party City has made our job a little bit easier when it comes to getting helium on peoples radar. Helium is something we need to address.
Elsesser said news coverage related to Party City's difficulties in sourcing helium cast a long-overdue spotlight on an element thats often overlooked and underestimated.
Yes, helium is known for making you sound like a chipmunk and filling your balloons. But the lighter-than-air element has far weightier uses.
(Excerpt) Read more at nbcnews.com ...
Right down the pike from Surf City where its two to one.
“...Helium is the ONLY chemical that cannot be replaced: Once vented to the atmosphere as a gas, He rises to the top of the atmosphere naturally and irreversibly, (because, of course, it is lighter than air) and then diffuses to space....”
Sounds like evil styrofoam and CO2...
They are heavier than O2 but, somehow find themselves in quantities manufactured by man, in our atmosphere
Magnets supercooled with Helium is what makes MRIs work ...
And they will still eat with their mouths open and making more gawd off ful and disgusting sounds
My dogs don’t make that noise when eating
It’s a by-product of natural gas. In 1996 (Clinton), Congress passed a law to phase out helium production by 2021, and the main producer in Amarillo Texas is doing just that.
I just went to get balloons for our park concert and was not able to purchase them. “We won’t know if we have any helium. Call a few days before the concert.”
Plenty of He around Jupiter.
You could always use Hydrogen... Plenty of that around.
Makes as much sense as the push to move from R134a to iso-Butane in refrigerators...
What could possibly go wrong.
Helium is a by-product of hydrogen. Hydrogen is the most abundant fuel in the universe. The Sun converts billions of cc’s of hydrogen into helium virtually every second. I think we could figure something out about doing that here on Earth. Call AOC. She’s a genius on all thing related to climate science.
It’s not just the cold, liquid helium also ‘magically’ transfers quantum properties, both necessary to making superpowered supercooled magnets.
Each MRI machine takes enough helium to fill about 56,000 party balloons. And there’s about 50,000 MRI machines in the world. Makes for about 3 billion balloons worth of helium. Not enough for even half the people on earth to have one balloon on their next birthday.
Save the MRI machine! Ban birthdays!
The He from gas is so cheap it makes it uneconomical to obtain it by other means.
Spell it M.R.I. for medical application.
Cryogenic cooling systems for reconnaissance imaging?
Texas gas NG fields.
How could we extract helium from the sun?
Everybody knows, you simply go to the sun at night!!
And land on the north or south pole!
No stupid. You land on the dark side of the sun. Like, duh!
That’s right! AOC said that’s what we should and she should know ‘cuz she’s like real real smart ‘n’ stuff..like...
Thanks for the post. That makes complete sense.
No! We go when it’s being eclipsed by Jupiter!
And while we’re on Jupiter, I guess we, um, borrow a cup of helium.
Here's some additional information (article from 2015):
tx did not know. do you think they’ll reverse this stupid law?
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