USEFUL PRODUCTS FROM AIR
|Nitrogen (N2) makes up 78% of the air and has a boiling point of -196°C. It
is colorless, odourless, and tasteless. Nitrogen is often used as an "inert"
gas due to its nonreactive nature. Gaseous nitrogen is used in the chemical
and petroleum industries for storage tank blanketing. It is also used extensively
by the electronics and metals industries for its inert properties. Liquid nitrogen
is also used as a refrigerant and for freezing food. Nitrogen can react to form
compounds under certain conditions:
Making Ammonia THE HABER PROCESS
Both nitrogen and hydrogen are needed to make ammonia. The reaction is said
to be reversible which means that nitrogen and hydrogen react to give ammonia
(1) and at the same time ammonia breaks down to give nitrogen and hydrogen (2):
1) N2 + 3H2
N2 + 3H2
This can be summarised as: N2 + 3H2
The nitrogen comes from the air and the hydrogen is produced by reacting methane
with steam:- CH4 + H20
CO + 3H2
Ammonia is made using:
- High pressure (200 atmospheres)
- A temperature of 450°c
- An iron catalyst
Ammonia is a key industrial chemical, it's used to make nitric
acid which is used to make fertilizers and explosives.
||Oxygen (O2) makes up 21% of the air and has a boiling point of -183°C. Oxygen
can be stored and shipped as either a gas or a cryogenic liquid. It has strong
oxidizing and life-sustaining properties. It is used in medicine and in the steelmaking
and metal-cutting industries. Oxygen is also used in the pulp and paper industries.
||Argon (Ar) is a monatomic, chemically inert gas composing slightly less than
1% of the air, its boiling point is -186°C. Argon is colorless, odourless, tasteless,
non-corrosive, non-flammable, and non-toxic. Argon is used as an inert gas in
applications such as arc welding, steelmaking, heat treating, and electronics
manufacturing. It is also used to make light bulbs.