There's More to Helium Than Balloons

What is Helium?

Helium (He) is a type of colorless, odorless gas mostly used for industrial purposes. It appears as the 2nd element on the periodic table of elements. Helium is considered an inert gas, meaning it cannot combust. While it's considered the second most abundant element in the universe, it's one of the most scarce on earth. Only .0005% of Earth's atmosphere is made up of helium, in fact. Helium is harvested from petroleum processing and also found in pockets underneath the ground. Interestingly, it was first discovered coming from the sun.

Uses

When people think of helium, the first two things that come to mind are balloons and high-pitched voices (by the way, do yourself a favor and don’t inhale helium, it can be quite dangerous). Interestingly enough, helium is used for more than just that. In the medical field, helium can be used to treat respiratory issues like asthma. Due to its extremely high boiling point, helium is used for cooling down MRI machines, and cooling jet engines.

 

Scuba divers use helium actually. While oxygen tanks are utilized for the divers to continue breathing in the low depths of the ocean, the tanks themselves are made up of more helium than oxygen. All oxygen tanks consist of 20% oxygen, while the remaining 80% is made of helium. The helium used for oxygen tanks and the medical field are very specific. We don't carry that kind of helium, as ours is meant more for entertainment purposes.

Storage

Helium is always stored in a pressurized cylinder. As per all gas tanks, it is best when stored in controlled environment and away from the elements. Keep it in an upright standing position properly secured against a wall. This can be done either with a cylinder wall bracket or cylinder stand, which is OSHA approved.

Most cylinders normally range from 1800-2200 PSI when full. Helium is measured in cubic feet. 

Most common helium tank sizes will be: 200, 125, 300 and 80 cubic feet cylinders in that order. If purchasing a helium cylinder for the purpose to fill balloons, please remember that a balloon filler must be used.

How Many Balloons Can You Fill With A Helium Tank?

Safety Concerns

As mentioned before, helium can be dangerous. It may be funny to watch someone inhale it to make their voice high pitched, but it’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt. Dizziness, headaches, suffocation, and even death can occur when inhaling helium. If liquid helium gets in your skin, it can actually cause frostbite. Your eyes are one of the most sensitive parts of your body, especially when dealing with most gases. As a precaution, you want to wear safety goggles when dealing with helium or any other gases. Please be sure to use all necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as per your local state and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) guidelines.

Where To Buy Helium Tanks?

We at CO2 Masters carry more than just CO2. We also have helium tanks as well! Our team can get you the helium tanks you need for any occasion that requires it. Don’t need helium? Well we have other gases as well, including CO2 tanks, propane tanks, and nitrogen tanks. We also carry the safety equipment needed to handle the gas with care. We can deliver whatever gas or gas-related product you need anywhere in the United States and Canada.

 

If you’d like to order some helium cylinders (or other gases like propane, nitrogen, or CO2), place a gas order order from here.

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