Main Uses Of Mercury

Filed under: Safe Usage Of Liquid Mercury - 20 Mar 2013  | Spread the word !

Mercury is a silver-colored metal which actually is liquid at room temperature. There are numerous useful properties of mercury, but one of the most important ones is that in certain cases mercury can remain liquid at any temperature, being able to conduct electricity. Still, people who handle mercury should be extremely careful, as this substance can be extremely dangerous, causing damage to the nervous system if inhaled.

Below you can find a list of the main uses of this metal. They are all extremely important, as in the lack of mercury maybe these devices wouldn’t be so simply accessible to all of us.

1. Thermometers

Thermometers are glass tubes filled with mercury. Mercury is absolutely a must in these devices for them to be able to register temperature. To determine body temperature, the thermometer has to be placed under the tongue. Mercury is well known to react to the changes in temperature by expanding or contracting.


2. Barometers

Barometers are known to be able to measure the pressure of the atmosphere. Barometers can be used to predict changes of the weather, being quite similar to thermometers when it comes the way they function. So, barometers are tubes filled with mercury, which in this case react to air pressure. Due to the changes in air pressure, mercury rises or falls.


3. Dental amalgams

Dental amalgams are commonly used by dentists to fill cavities. However, the use of mercury for dental related purposes is currently regulated by the FDA.


4. Lamps

Fluorescent lamps, mercury vapor lamps and sodium lamps use mercury, as well. They can be used anywhere around the house. These lamps are considered to be extremely efficient, this is why they are really popular nowadays.


As you can imagine, these are just few of the main uses of mercury. For instance, mercury may also be used in the manufacturing process of various equipments. Other mercury uses include usage as a catalyst, in ritual practices, in most ammunition, as well as in electric switchers and at medical schools.