Nitrous oxide

Nitrous oxide (or Dinitrogen monoxide), commonly known as laughing gas or nitrous.

Chemical formula: N2O.

At room temperature, it is a colorless non-flammable gas, with a pleasant, slightly sweet odor and taste. It is used in surgery and dentistry for its anesthetic and analgesic effects. It is known as “laughing gas” due to the euphoric effects of inhaling it, a property that has led to its recreational use as an inhalant drug. At elevated temperatures, nitrous oxide is a powerful oxidizer similar to molecular oxygen. It is soluble in water.

Incompatibilities & Reactivities with: Al (aluminum), B (boron), N2H4 (hydrazine), LiH (lithium hydride), PH3 (phosphine), Na (sodium).

Symptoms: dyspnea (breathing difficulty); drowsiness, headache; asphyxia; reproductive effects; liquid: frostbite. Target organs: respiratory system, central nervous system, reproductive system.


Chemical formula: N2O
Molar mass: 44.013 g/mol
Appearance: colorless gas
Density: 1.977 g/L (gas)
Melting point: −90.86 °C (−131.55 °F; 182.29 K)
Boiling point: −88.48 °C (−127.26 °F; 184.67 K)
Vapor pressure: 5150 kPa (20 °C)
Viscosity: 14.90 μPa·s

Chemical formula: N2O
Nitrous Oxide has significant greenhouse effect (1 kg N2O equivalent with 300kg CO2). Most of the emissions came from the Agricultural activities (fertilizer usage) and fossil fuel combustion. To minimize the Industrial production pollution Linde developed a Vent Recovery System (VRS) to recover mor than 90% vented N2O compered to previous production technology.

Global Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Gas

Global Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Gas

Nitrous Oxide Production

The production of nitrous oxide is based on the continuous thermal decomposition of ammonium nitrate at a concentration of 90±2% and at a temperature of approximately 250 °C. The chemical formula of the decomposition is: NH4NO3 → N2O + 2H2O + HEAT. The reaction is exothermic.
Chemical formula of decomposition:
Theoretical production yield (100%):
*Average production yield (>90%):
In percentage:


* – impurities


Nitrous Oxide Industrial Application

Ultra High Purity at least 99.9995% after special purification (see.: N2O Purification) for electronic applications and semiconductor industry as the source of oxygen for CVD (chemical vapor deposition). For the LCD screen manufacturing it is used as a reagent gas. Also possible to use as a refrigerant or leak-detecting agent.

Nitrous Oxide Medical Application

Nitrous oxide or laughing gas as it is commonly known was first synthesised by Joseph Priestley in 1772. It was initially used as a dental analgesic forty years after this and has been used extensively in a wide range of surgical procedures for both anaesthesia and analgesia. The exact mechanism of action of nitrous oxide is unknown, but its effects take place within the pain centres of the brain and spinal cord. It is thought to have an effect on the Gamma Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) cells increasing inhibition of nerve cells causing drowsiness and sleep. It also is related to the release of endogenous neurotransmitters such as opioid peptides and serotonin. The release of these neurotransmitters is thought to activate descending pain pathways that inhibit pain transmission. The medical nitrous oxide produced by our plants is of a superior quality than requested by the European Pharmacopoeia 99% for medical applications such as anesthesia and pain reducing.
Also used as a mixture with 50% Oxygen.

Nitrous oxide or laughing gas
Nitrous oxide or laughing gas 02

Nitrous Oxide Food industry Application

Food grade N2O is a highly effective propellant for dispensing fatty liquids like oil and heavy cream.
Cream chargers

Nitrous Oxide Conversion

Use this Conversion table to convert between commonly used units. Select your current unit in the left column, the desired unit in the suitable right column.