One of the most important elements for all living things is carbon; It must also be said that it is not a metal. Carbon is the basis of organic chemistry , as it is in all living organisms. Carbon is a non-metal. carbon uses in everyday life
The simplest organic molecules consist of carbon chemically bonded to hydrogen. Many other common organics also include oxygen, nitrogen, phosphorus, and sulfur. That is why not all of its compounds are harmless , nor can all of them be considered good in general.
What does it mean that carbon is the chemical basis of life carbon uses in everyday life
Because it forms more compounds than any other element, by being able to join any other, it is sometimes called the King of the elements. Carbon is produced inside stars, although it was not produced in the Big Bang.
The most amazing thing about this chemical element is that elemental carbon can take the form of one of the hardest substances (diamond) or one of the softest (graphite).
Another of the great enigmas of its essence is that carbon compounds have unlimited uses. Pure carbon exists freely in nature and has been known since prehistoric times.
Organized in hexagons and forming sheets, the carbon atoms give rise to graphene , a material that everyone has heard of for its incredible mechanical and electrical properties.
It is a transparent material, extremely hard but flexible, elastic and light, with high thermal and electrical conductivity, it heats up little when conducting electrons (less Joule effect), and has self-healing capacity .
Pure charcoal is considered non-toxic , although inhaling fine particles, such as soot, can damage lung tissue. Graphite and charcoal are considered safe enough to eat. Its security is obviously not absolute, and at Soluquisa we know its characteristics perfectly.
Carbon is the fourth most abundant element in the universe (hydrogen, helium, and oxygen are found in higher amounts, by mass). It is the fifteenth most abundant element in the earth’s crust.
Carbon can be the safest element, or extremely dangerous , precisely because its uses, as we have said, are unlimited ; so it is essential to know at all times what we have in hand.
In the carbon cycle, photosynthetic plants take carbon from the air or seawater and convert it to glucose and other organic compounds through the Calvin photosynthesis cycle. Animals eat part of the biomass and exhale carbon dioxide, returning the carbon to the atmosphere .
As far as we know, carbon is the only element that is capable of supplying a complex organism with the chemical diversity it needs to exist ; since carbon has the priceless property of bonding with itself forming long and complex chains, which is why it is the basic element not only of organic chemistry, but also of biochemistry.
The use of hydrocarbons and fossil fuels by man breaks the balance of the carbon cycle. Carbon dioxide returns to the atmosphere at a rate much greater than its natural rate.
It accumulates, produces the greenhouse effect, and can cause or accelerate climate change . It also accumulates in the oceans, making them more acidic . The Earth has already lived through these situations in the past, and they led to great extinctions.
As we have said, carbon is one of the most important elements of organic life, since it forms long atomic chains that create DNA, the genetic code of all living things on earth. However, carbon can be a dangerous element in certain situations.
Under the right conditions, ingesting large amounts of carbon can harm both the human body and the environment, and because it can combine with other elements to form compound molecules , many of the compound molecules are made from carbon. they are harmful to human health.
An example is carbon monoxide . Carbon monoxide is a by-product of burning carbon-based fuels. The compound interferes with the body’s breathing process, preventing oxygen from going to the brain or internal organs.
At Soluquisa we know how to treat carbon and its by-products , since it is essential to know how it works in order to know how to safely treat its containment, treatment, packaging and transport .
For example, burning carbon fuels also emits a by-product known as carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is also emitted as a by-product (in animals) of oxygen inhalation .
However, burning carbon-based fuels such as oil or coal emits large amounts of carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is considered a greenhouse gas, which means that it absorbs light and heat energy, warming the atmosphere.
Although plant life consumes carbon dioxide for respiration purposes, the enormous amount of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere is not enough for trees to consume it.