Nitric Oxide | Properties | Uses | and Facts - Elements and Compounds


Thursday, June 8, 2023

Nitric Oxide | Properties | Uses | and Facts

Properties Uses and Facts about Nitric Oxide

    What is Nitric Oxide

    Nitric oxide is a toxic gas, it is also known as nitrogen monoxide, its chemical formula is NO. One of its molecules consists of one atom of nitrogen, and one atom of oxygen. This gas is produced in the oxidation and combustion processes of nitrogen. When a mixture of air and hydrocarbon fuel is burned in an internal combustion engine or power plant, the inert nitrogen normally present in the air combines with oxygen at very high temperatures to form nitric oxide gas. Apart from this, this gas is also produced by the combination of oxygen and nitrogen gas when lightning strikes naturally in the atmosphere.
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    Nitric Oxide Properties Uses and Facts

    Properties of Nitric Oxide

    • Nitric oxide is a colorless gas
    • Its density is 1.34 kg per cubic meter, so it is a heavier gas than normal air.
    • Its melting point is -164 degree Celsius.
    • Its boiling point is -152 degree Celsius.
    • In the liquid state, this gas appears as a pale blue liquid, while in the solid state, it appears as a bluish-white solid.
    • This gas is not flammable, but it accelerates the combustion process.
    • It reacts rapidly with oxygen to form nitrogen dioxide (NO2).
    • It has a pungent and sweet smell.
    • It is an extremely toxic gas in high concentrations.
    • This gas is sparingly soluble in water, in water it reacts with oxygen to form nitrous acid, 4 NO + O2 + 2H2O ➜ 4 HNO2.
    • It reacts with ozone in the air to form nitrogen dioxide.

    Uses of Nitric Oxide

    • Nitric oxide plays an important chemical signaling function in humans and other animals and has various applications in medicine.
    • Nitric oxide is produced in trace amounts by nearly every type of cell in the human body and is one of the most important molecules for blood vessel health. It is a vasodilator, which means that it relaxes the intrinsic muscles of the blood vessels in our body, causing the vessels to expand. In this way, nitric oxide increases blood flow and lowers blood pressure.
    • Nitric oxide is a gas, it works by relaxing smooth muscle to widen (dilate) blood vessels, especially in the lungs. Nitric oxide is used with a breathing machine (ventilator) to treat respiratory failure in premature babies.
    • Nitric oxide is a compound in the body that stimulates the release of certain hormones, such as insulin and human growth hormone.
    • Nitric oxide is used in the production of nitric acid.
    • It is also used for bleaching rayon.

    Facts about Nitric Oxide

    • Nitric oxide gas is extremely toxic when inhaled and absorbed through the skin, but it is produced naturally in our bodies in small amounts, and is essential for many vital functions in our bodies.
    • The most dangerous effect of nitric oxide is on the lungs. It is accompanied by symptoms of cough and shortness of breath, as well as a burning sensation in the throat and chest when inhaled. Patients may experience nausea and fatigue. There may be a delay of several hours in the appearance of some symptoms.
    • The startling discovery was made in 1987, that the small reactive radical molecule nitric oxide is specially produced in our bodies and acts as a key messenger in the mammalian cardiovascular system. Robert Furchgott, Louis Ignarro and Ferid Murado were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1998 for this discovery.

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