Boron is a non metal element
and forming covalent bond. It forms covalent bond which is
orbitals at 120
. There is no tendency of Boron to form
univalent compound. Boron also can form a large number of compounds like open
basket type of structure and closed polyhedron. Boron has atomic weight of
10.811 g/mol and atomic number of 5. It’s a group 13 elements and period 2 of
periodic table. Its have two isotopes that is Boron-10 and Boron-11.
History of boron.
Boron name came from its
mineral compound that is borax. The origin name came from Arabic word, buraq and Persian word burah.. Joseph Louis Gay-Loussac, Louis-Jaques Thernad and Sir
Humphry Davy were the chemist that discovered boron element. Sir Humphry Davy
discovered that electric current in borates solution produce brown precipitate
at electrode. While Joseph Louis Gay-Loussac and Louis-Jaques Thernard using
iron to reduce higher temperature in boric acid.
Boron is well known because it
can occurs as concentrated deposits of borax
O and kernite
. The largest deposit are in Death Valley
which in Utah and Mojave dessert at California. The amount of crude borate
minerals mined in year of 1993 is 5.3 million tonnes. The largest producer of
crude borate minerals are Russian with 53% and Turkey and USA is same with 19%
Melting points, boiling points and
Boron melting point is 2348K
and boiling point is 4273K. Boron has highest melting point because of it
unusual crystal structure. Boron has four different allotropic forms. Even
after forming the bonds, Boron still has insufficient electrons to fill valence
shell. Because of its small size and higher ionization energy make it harder
for Boron to solve the problem using metallic bonding. Boron simplest form is
?-rhombohedral. In ?-rhombohedral form half the atom are bonded two different
atoms of icosahedra. Only 37% is
occupied by atoms, compare to 74% for close packed arrangement. This shows that
icosahedra fill up space ineffectively. Boron has highest boiling point compare
to Ga, In and Ti.
Uses of Boron
Boron is use to make boron
steel or boron carbide control rods for nuclear factors. Boron has very high
cross-section for capturing neutrons. Control rods made up of boron steel or
boron carbide lowered into a reactor to absorb neutrons and make the reactor
slow down. Boron carbide also use as abrasive. Boron is used to make impact
resistant steel to increase the hardenability of steel.
Borax and orthoboric acid
and boron sesquioxide
has many uses. The most important uses is in
making of fiberglass for insulation and textiles which is 50% use in USA and
perborates for detergents that 35% in Europe. World production of borax is
roughly 2.2 million tonnes in 1992 that USA has 45% while Turkey is 42%. Borax
also can be used as flames retardant for fabric and woods. Product of mixing
borax with NaOH can be sold as ‘Polybor’ and ‘Timbor’ for treating hardboard
and timber against attack by wood boring insects. Borax can be used as a flux
in brazing and silver soldering. When borax reacts with oxides such as
on surface of hot brass can forming borates which is melting and make
the clean surface exposed to solder. Borax also can be used for making of
enamel and leather tanning.
Treating borates ore with
sulphuric acid can produce orthoboric acid. Reaction
produce mono peroxoboric acid
Sodium peroxoborate is constituent for many
detegents and washing powders, mostly in Europe, washing powder may contain 20%
of sodium peroxoborate and less used in USA. Peroxoborates act as brighteners
because it can absorb UV light such as sunlight and emit visible light.
Peroxoborates can be decomposed to hydrogen peroxide
which can act as bleach at temperatures over
The sum of three ionization
energy for boron element is very high. Boron has no tendency to form ions but
always form covalent form. Down the group from boron to aluminium resulting in
increasing the size. The poor shielding effect by d electrons resulting d-block
contraction that affect values of boron element.
Reaction of boron
Pure crystalline of boron is
very unreactive but at high temperature, strong oxidizing agent such as mixture
of hot concentrated
sodium peroxide attack the pure crystalline boron. Amorphous boron which
contain between 2% and 5% of impurities is more reactive. It can be burn in
oxygen to form oxide while burning at white heat in dinitrogen forming nitride
BN. Nitride is slippery white solid with a layer structure that similar with
graphite. Burning of boron with halogens resulting in trihalides. It also can
react directly with other elements to form borides that hard and refractory. It
also can reduce strong
from fused with NaOH.
Compound of boron
Boron sesquioxide and borates
are the most important compounds of boron. Sesqui that means one and half, so
the oxide should have a formula
. All elements in group form sesquioxides
when heated in dioxygen.
(boron sesquioxide) is produce by
dehydrating of boric acid.
acidic and non-metallic oxide. Its also anhydride of orthoboric acid and reacts
with basic oxides to form salts that called methaborates or borates. It also
can fuse to produce glass like metaborate bead when undergoes borax bead test.
Borax bead test is when borax or
heated in a Bunsen burner flame with metal oxides on a loop of platinum wire. Metaborate
bead test is used to identifying the metal for example is to test that vitamin
a basic oxides by react with strongly acidic compound. Thus,
can formed boron phosphate or boron arsenate
when react with
soluble in water and act as weak monobasic acid. It do not donates electron but
it accepts hydrogen ion. It was written as a lewis acid as
between boron with other elements
Boron differs slightly with
other elements in group 13 mainly because of its size that were smaller
compared to other. Its always covalent and non-metallic. Boron also show
diagonal relationship with Si of group 14.
an acidic oxide like
which is amphoteric. Simple borates and
silicate ions can be polymerize forming isopolyacids. Both build similar
structures principle, namely by sharing oxygen atoms. Complicated chains,
rings, sheets and other structures are forming in the same way. While aluminium
forming no analogous compound. Hydrides of boron are gaseous, readily
hydrolysed and spontaneously in flammable compare to aluminium hydrides that
polymeric solid and silicon hydrides that readily hydrolysed and inflammable.
Halides of B and Si hydrolysed easily and vigorously while aluminium halides
that partially hydrolysed in water.
Why I choose Boron?
I choose Boron because in our
daily life we always exposed to boron especially in our foods. There is a
little amount of Boron that we consumed through our food and drinks. Although
boron is rarely found in solar system but it have a lot of naturally occurring
compound. The common compound is borax, boric acid, kernite and borates.
Borates are naturally released from the oceans, volcanic activity and also in
geothermal steam. Boron element also is needed for human body to maintaining a
healthy bones and mental. Boron element also very useful for plants this is
because boron has essential nutrients for the plants. Plants need boron for
cell division, pollination and seed development.
Research that involving boron is Boron act as medium
storage energy for solar energy system development. This research were
conducted by Enrico Gianfarco Campari, Michele Bianchi and Luca Tomesani by
Department of Physics and Astronomy and Department of Industrial Engineering of
University of Bologna. The purpose of this research is mainly to reduce waste
of energy that connected with power transfer from high solar energy
productivity areas to highly industrialized areas such as in Europe, where more
energy is needed. Building up power lines or hydrogen resulting rises to an
energy loss which can reach to 50% of
produced energy. A cycle is used where Boron is needed for the means to store
and transport solar energy from production site to the place where boron energy
is use. This cycle will reduce long range transport and long term storage
problem which are critical issues for low Carbon economy.
Boron will stored energy of the plants that were obtained
from the Sun through Boron oxide reduction. Then boron will transported to the
area where the energy stored turned into electrical energy that needed to
produce hydrogen. The energy released process will yield Boron oxide, which
then transfer back to solar plant and reduced to boron, closing the cycle.
Boron hydrolysis is used to get rid of hydrogen transportation lose.
Producing electricity from Boron element to the users
require a power transmission system which has losses. Yet this losses in
transmission system from high-voltage grid to the step down transformers to the
users are lower than those in thousands km long power line. Therefore boron
cycle is quite competitive as to direct electrical energy production.
Boron represent low risk in during handling and
transportation. This is due to characteristics of boron that were harmless
substances and simple to handle and transport. For example, a container ship that
contains a boron element is sink. There were no ambient disaster because boron
is harmless on the sea bottom as sea also containing boric acid. Reaction of
boron and oxygen also harmless as the reaction only produce boron oxide. Boron
can be in solid form to easily transport from production site to utilization
site such as truck and container ship. Therefore no capital investment are
needed for boron transportation. Boron also not needed a particular care for
handling and storing.
From the research that I had
done, boron is element from the group 13 elements that can form borates and boric
acid. Boron also has higher melting point compared to other element in group 13
because of it unusual crystal structure. Boron is very important in making of
fiberglass that use to makes textiles. Boron also use to make a buffer solution
and detergent that we used for our home chores activity. Boron element is
always covalent because it has no tendency to form ion. Boron also has highest
boiling point with 4273K. It’s also contain non-metallic properties. Boron
sesquioxide and borates are the compound that very important for boron. Boron
sesquioxide can be produce by dehydrating of boric acid. Trihalides can be
produced by burning boron with halogens. It’s also can react directly with
other element to form borides. Borides is hard and refractory. Boron isotopes
is needed for nuclear industry. Boron-10 is needed in boiling water reactor
while Boron-11 is used as a nuclear reflector. Both boron isotopes also needed
to produce radioisotopes such as N-13 and C-11. Boron also can be used as a
medium for storage energy of solar energy system. Because of its properties
that were easy to handle and transport make it more suitable element for medium
of transportation of solar energy. Boron also very harmless to the sea because
the element will dissolve quickly and the sea also contains boric acid.
G.C., Michele, B., Luca, T. (2017). Boron as a storage medium for solar energy.
Energy Procedia, 126, 541-548. Retrieved from http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1876610217337827?via%3Dihub
about Boron. (2014, November 4). Retrieved from https://www.livescience.com/28674-boron.html
are the effects of boron on organisms in environment. (2004, December 15).
Retrieved from https://www.greenfacts.org/en/boron/boron-1.htm#5