Zyra's front page //// Elements //// site index

NITROGEN


Nitrogen is AIR. Or to put it more scientifically, AIR is 80% nitrogen. But whereas the oxygen (18%?) is notable for breathing and burning, and the CO2 has various socio-political ecological significance and is breathed by plants, the nitrogen doesn't really do much most of the time. It's like the neutral-medium base of a medicine.

The element Nitrogen does do things, and can be seen in various chemical reactions. It is much more interesting in compounds than when it's just floating around as a gas.

Nitrogen in air is fairly inert, but jet aircraft engines are so hot that they make some of the nitrogen in air react to form compounds. This is in some ways more of a pollution hazard than CO2. It's known as "oxides of nitrogen" NOX as it includes Nitric Oxide (NO) and Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2). More about this at http://www.nasa.gov/centers/glenn/about/fs10grc.html

Nitrogen is also interesting if you cool it down to 196 degrees below zero, because then it becomes liquid and can be used for a variety of fun applications! See Liquid Nitrogen


There is an intention of adding some nitric and nitrogenous links on this page at some time.