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File:Hydrogen cylinders used to inflate balloon.png
Stack of hydrogen gas cylinders all hooked up to balloon supply pipe.

Most airborne balloons were filled with hydrogen; the others had hot air.

Preparation of hydrogen could be achieved in a few ways:

The method originally suggested by Charles is probably the simplest, and consists in the addition of dilute sulphuric acid to iron. But practically it leads to difficulties. The newly-generated gas is very hot and adulterated with a certain amount of acid vapours. It must therefore be cooled and washed free from impurities. This is done by allowing it to pass through flowing water, after which it is dried by coming into contact with substances which easily absorb moisture, such as calcium chloride. It is then ready to be passed into the balloon. This method is still employed with various modifications; iron can, of course, be replaced by zinc, and sulphuric by hydrochloric acid.

The chemical formula showing the reaction is as follows, viz:

H2SO4 + Fe = H2 + FeSO4

i.e., the addition of sulphuric acid to iron forms hydrogen and ferrous sulphate.[1]

Dangers of hydrogen:

In 1836 Mr. Wise descended at Baltimore at night, a crowd gathered round him with torches; the gas inflamed, the balloon was destroyed. Recently, Mr. Hampton's balloon in a descent near Dublin, came in contact with the roof of a house, the chimney of which was on fire, the gas inflamed, the balloon was destroyed. Mr. Hampton escaled by falling on the arms raised to save him of the crowd beneath. [...] The first aeronaut who ascended in a balloon, Pilâtre de Rozier lost his life from placing a fire balloon under a gas one: it was as Biot remarks, the same as to place a furnace under a powder magazine. Gas is not fit for respiration. At a descent at Conisborough, in 1837, three men got under the balloon while the gas was escaping, and were exposed to its influence; they were for some time in a state of asphyxia.[2]

This wiki has 35 patents in category "Hydrogen". Other techtypes related to Hydrogen: CPC C01B3/06, CPC C01B3/061, FR 14.1, USPC 114/54

Patents in category Hydrogen

Enclosing categories Balloon, LTA
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