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Difference Between Hydrogen and Oxygen

Hydrogen vs Oxygen

We are all aware of the importance of oxygen gas to all life forms, especially human beings. It is one gas that supports all life forms. There is another gas called hydrogen that is equally important for us. There are many differences between hydrogen and oxygen but the greatest benefit to us is seen in the chemistry between these two gases as it results in formation of water that is a necessity for us. Let us compare the two gases on the basis of their properties.


Oxygen is the third most abundant element found in the atmosphere, after hydrogen, and helium. It constitutes about 50% of Earth’s mass and makes up almost 90% of world’s oceans. In the atmosphere of earth, oxygen takes up 21% of volume and 23% by weight. Oxygen is made up of two atoms of Oxygen and the gas is the most stable form of elemental oxygen.


On the other hand, hydrogen is the most abundant material on earth, taking up nearly 75% of mass of all matter. Hydrogen gas is called diatomic hydrogen that is it is made up of two hydrogen atoms. As it is very light, hydrogen gas is rarely found in earth’s atmosphere as it escapes the gravity of earth. Most of the hydrogen found on earth is in the form of elemental hydrogen. The vast majority is in the form of hydrocarbons and water.

Difference between Hydrogen and Oxygen

Oxygen is vital for human beings as we need it to breathe so that our brain cells get the oxygen necessary for their functioning. It is needed by the body to maintain metabolism and also to get rid of toxins from our bodies. We get hydrogen as a component of water. Hydrogen gas is mostly used in the manufacture of Ammonia gas and is also used as a source of fuel.

Both hydrogen and oxygen are necessary for our survival (oxygen for breathing and hydrogen in the form of water). They have different chemical and physical properties. While hydrogen is one of the lightest gases, oxygen is relatively heavier (15 times than hydrogen) which is why we are able to breathe. They are both reactive gases and their reaction produces water which is essential for our survival.

In brief:

• Both hydrogen and oxygen are most abundantly found elements on earth.

• While hydrogen gas is very light oxygen is a heavy gas

• Life forms need oxygen for breathing to provide it to brain cells to function normally, to maintain metabolism and to remove toxins from our bodies.

• Hydrogen being very light escapes from earth’s gravity and is used mainly in the form of its compounds such as ammonia, hydrocarbons and water.


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  • joban

    please tell me which is more reactive element Hydrogen or Oxygen??

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