Breathing liquid oxygen
Name: June Hagberg
Would it be possible for humans to breathe liquid oxygen?
Liquid oxygen is very cold, more than 200 degrees below zero on the
centigrade scale. At this temperature all of the desirable physical
properties of the lung would be nonfunctional. To get an idea of how
the flexibility of the lung would change, place a carnation in some liquid
nitrogen or a super deep freeze. Your question is interesting though
because it would be desirable to breath liquid instead of gas under
certain conditions. Special liquids are being designed to carry dissolved
gaseous oxygen to the lung and to remove carbon dioxide. Even fish are
breathing dissolved oxygen, the water is much too warm for liquid oxygen.
Michael B Lomonaco
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Update: June 2012