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Scientists Report Stable Compound Containing Unreactive Argon Atoms

August 24, 2000

Finnish scientists report in today's Nature that they have created the first stable compound to contain atoms of the unreactive gas argon. Atoms of argon and the other so-called "noble" gases--helium, neon, xenon, krypton and radon--have a full complement of electrons and do not normally react with other substances. Researchers have already made molecules containing xenon, krypton and radon, and now chemist Markku Rasanen and colleagues at the University of Helsinki say they have made the compound argon fluorohydride (HArF).

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--Compiled by Times medical writer Thomas H. Maugh II

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