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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 27 No. 1, p. 44-47
    Received: Mar 21, 1962
    Accepted: May 8, 1962

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Inorganic Nitrogen Oxidations in Relation to Associated Changes in Free Energy1

  1. Tyng-Tsair Chao and
  2. Wybe Kroontje2



Free energy changes of inorganic nitrogen oxidations in acid and basic media are calculated, interrelated, and used to interpret some research data reported in the literature. The data obtained indicate that hyponitrous acid and nitrous oxide may be considered intermediates in nitrification, however, the existence of hydroxylamine as an intermediate between ammonia and/or ammonium ion and nitrite is not supported by the calculations obtained. It is shown that in acid solutions nitrite may undergo three reactions: it may decompose to nitric oxide and nitrite, oxidize to nitrate, or be reduced to nitrous oxide; in alkaline solutions nitrate seems to be the only product. Nitrous oxide may evolve under aerobic conditions from the decomposition of hyponitrous acid and under anaerobic conditions from the interaction of intermediate products, hydroxylamine, and nitrite.

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