“Can an inert gas protect from oxidation or combustion?”


Modified atmosphere packaging is created by replacing some or all of the air with a protective gas mixture. This reduces oxidation of meat and produce.


After the Hindenburg disaster, blimps now use helium, a non-flammable, inert gas.

Titanium welding

Titanium burns at high temperature. To prevent this, titanium is welded in an enclosure filled with argon gas as the oxygen-laden air is vented in order to provide an inert atmosphere.

Light bulbs

The first light bulbs had all the air drawn out of them to form a vacuum. This invited the filament to sublimate (boil) which weakened the filament and coated the inside of the bulb making it less effective. Argon gas is now used instead, as it reduces sublimation, even at higher temperatures (and therefore brighter output). Argon displaces the air (and its oxygen) inside the bulb so the filament does not burn.

More examples

As I stumble across real world examples of this Inventive Principle in action I add them here.

Your turn

What problems do you face that this inventive principle could help solve? Have you used this principle before?