A HUGE explosion erupted in Beirut on August 4 causing 100 deaths and nearly 4,000 injuries. It should not be heated in a confined space. Ammonium lactate is used to treat dry, scaly, itchy skin. Ammonium nitrate is an ingredient in certain explosives. Ammonia is used in its anhydrous form (a gas) and the nitric acid is concentrated. Ammonium nitrate is a hazardous chemical that has many grades and is used in fertiliser and explosives products because of its unique properties. [21] The resulting heat and pressure from decomposition increases the sensitivity to detonation and increases the speed of decomposition. Contamination can reduce this to 20 atmospheres. After the solution is formed, typically at about 83% concentration, the excess water is evaporated off to leave an ammonium nitrate (AN) content of 95% to 99.9% concentration (AN melt), depending on grade. News Corp is a network of leading companies in the worlds of diversified media, news, education, and information services. Chemical Advisory: Safe Storage, Handling, and Management of Ammonium Nitrate, United States Environmental Protection Agency, "Report for Kooragang Island Update PHA MOD1 Report", "Guidance for Compatibility of Fertilizer Blending Materials", "Material Safety Data Sheet, Ammonium nitrate MSDS", "Lebanon's president calls for two-week state of emergency in Beirut after blast", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ammonium_nitrate&oldid=991074538, Short description is different from Wikidata, Pages using collapsible list with both background and text-align in titlestyle, Articles containing unverified chemical infoboxes, All articles with vague or ambiguous time, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Shock-to-detonation transition. A solution of ammonium nitrate with nitric acid called Cavea-b showed promise for use in spacecraft as a more energetic alternative to the common monopropellant hydrazine. [27][28], Ammonium nitrate begins decomposition after melting, releasing NO x , HNO3, NH3 and H2O. Health and safety data are shown on the safety data sheets available from suppliers and from various governments.[21][22][23]. Determine the amount of fertilizer necessary using the soil test results as a guide. The manufacture, conversion, bagging, import, export, transport, possession for sale or use of ammonium nitrate is covered under The Ammonium Nitrate Rules, 2012. Another use of ammonium nitrate is in the food industry where it is used as a nutrient in producing antibiotics and yeast. Ammonium nitrate has an LD50 of 2217 mg/kg,[35] which for comparison is about two-thirds that of table salt. Ammonium nitrate is predominantly used in agriculture as a fertiliser. Examples include the Oppau explosion of 1921 (one of the largest artificial non-nuclear explosions), the Texas City disaster of 1947, the 2015 Tianjin explosions in China, and the 2020 Beirut explosion.[37]. [32], Ammonium nitrate is not hazardous to health and is usually used in fertilizer products.[32][33][34]. Ammonium nitrate decomposes, non-explosively, into the gases nitrous oxide and water vapor when heated. The AN melt is then made into "prills" or small beads in a spray tower, or into granules by spraying and tumbling in a rotating drum. Ammonium nitrate-based explosives were used in the Sterling Hall bombing in Madison, Wisconsin, 1970, the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, the 2011 Delhi bombings, the 2011 bombing in Oslo, and the 2013 Hyderabad blasts. Ammonium nitrate was mined there in the past,[when?] Many ammonium nitrate disasters, with loss of lives, have occurred. A number of trials were carried out in the 1960s but the substance was not adopted by NASA. The commercial grade contains about 33.5 percent nitrogen, all of which is in forms utilizable by plants; it is the most common nitrogenous component of artificial fertilizers. -Ammonium nitrate is an industrial chemical commonly used in fertilisers and as an explosive for quarrying and mining. Detonation may occur at 80 atmospheres. You may associate ammonium nitrate with explosives; it's commonly used in safety explosives and pyrotechnics as well as fertilizer. Ammonium nitrate was also used to create the explosives used in the 2006 Mumbai train bombings. Ammonium nitrate can also be made via metathesis reactions: As ammonium nitrate is a salt, both the cation, NH4+, and the anion, NO3−, may take part in chemical reactions. Ammonium nitrate, (NH 4 NO 3), a salt of ammonia and nitric acid, used widely in fertilizers and explosives. Otherwise, it can coalesce into a large, solid mass. Ammonium nitrate is a popular fertilizer since it provides half of the N in the nitrate form and half in the ammonium form. The industrial production of ammonium nitrate entails the acid-base reaction of ammonia with nitric acid:[10]. Ammonium nitrate is used in the high explosive ANFO (ammonium nitrate/fuel oil). Other names we use for this compound are nitro-limestone and nitrochalk. [26], Ammonium nitrate has a critical relative humidity of 59.4%, above which it will absorb moisture from the atmosphere. Blending ammonium nitrate with certain other fertilizers can lower the critical relative humidity.[29]. Ammonium nitrate is a chemical compound with the chemical formula NH4NO3. It is predominantly used in agriculture as a high-nitrogen fertilizer. Large stockpiles of the material can also be a major fire risk due to their supporting oxidation, a situation which can easily escalate to detonation. For this reason, phase stabilized ammonium nitrate (PSAN) which incorporates metal halides as stabilisers has been investigated.[14]. [15] It is less concentrated than urea (46-0-0), giving ammonium nitrate a slight transportation disadvantage. [12] See § disasters for details. It was reported that 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate was stored in a warehouse for six years without safety measures. Ammonium nitrate can explode through two mechanisms: InChI=1S/NO3.H3N/c2-1(3)4;/h;1H3/q-1;/p+1, Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their, Production, reactions and crystalline phases, Ammonium Nitrate-Regulating its use, Balancing Access & Protection from, largest artificial non-nuclear explosions, "Ammonium nitrate production by country, 2019 - knoema.com". Using ammonium nitrate in gardens and large scale agricultural fields enhances plant growth and provides a ready supply of nitrogen from which plants can draw. Ammonium nitrate has the chemical formula NH₄NO₃. Find out more about its hazards and safe management. The chemical made the news again after a huge explosion in Beirut caused the death of 100 people and nearly 4,000 injuries. It is a white crystalline solid and is highly soluble in water. At temperatures below around 300 °C, the decomposition mainly produces nitrous oxide and water: At higher temperatures, the following reaction predominates.[11]. It is used to make fertilizers and explosives. The rules also make storage of ammonium nitrate in large quantities in populated areas illegal in India. Employees of those with licenses to deal with the substance are still required to be supervised by authorized personnel and are required to pass a security and national police check before a license may be granted. It has some military applications as well. It is normally spread as small pellets and dissolves quickly in moisture, releasing nitrogen into the soil. The reaction is violent owing to its highly exothermic nature. Ammonium nitrate is a crystal-like white solid which is made in large industrial quantities. It is predominantly used in agriculture as a high-nitrogen fertilizer. Though the material itself is noncombustible it will accelerate the burning of combustible materials. If there is a significant amount of ammonium nitrate it can generate enough heat to catch fire and continue to burn eventually causing an explosion. Ammonium lactate may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide. It also was used, in combination with independently explosive "fuels" such as guanidine nitrate,[18][19] as a cheaper (but less stable) alternative to 5-aminotetrazole in the inflators of airbags manufactured by Takata Corporation, which were recalled as unsafe after killing 14 people.[20]. But not all ammonium nitrate experiments end with a bang. These prills or granules are the typical AN products in commerce. In most countries, it is used to make explosives for mining, quarrying and civil construction because of its low cost and ready availability. The potential for use of the material as an explosive has prompted regulatory measures. Ammonium nitrate fertilizer is a simple compound to make. It is popular because it is a cheap and highly stable explosive. The following occur under atmospheric pressure. But what is it and what is it used for? Ammonia produced by the Haber process can be oxidized to nitric acid by the Ostwald process. While ammonium nitrate is stable at ambient temperature and pressure under many conditions, it may detonate from a strong initiation charge. Ammonium nitrate can absorb enough moisture to liquefy. Most countries have regulations controlling the storage of ammonium nitrate to make it safe. The chemical is applied in granule form into the soil and quickly dissolves under moisture, allowing nitrogen to be released. It is created when … Due to these bans, "Potassium chlorate – the stuff that makes safety matches catch fire – has surpassed fertilizer as the explosive of choice for insurgents. Ammonium nitrate is an important fertilizer with NPK rating 34-0-0 (34% nitrogen). Examples of explosives containing ammonium nitrate include: ANFO is a mixture of 94% ammonium nitrate ("AN") and 6% fuel oil ("FO") widely used as a bulk industrial explosive. Even so, plants can not use some of the nitrogen in either product until it has been converted to the Anitrate form. 2. For example, in Australia, the Dangerous Goods Regulations came into effect in August 2005 to enforce licensing in dealing with such substances. Health and safety data are shown on the material safety data sheets, which are available from suppliers and can be found on the internet. Ammonium nitrate is a chemical compound widely used in farming as fertilizer. Ammonium nitrate liquid is the white crystals dissolved in water. Examples of such disasters are. Ammonium nitrate is a chemical compound used in agriculture as a fertilizer, to make pyrotechnics, as an ingredient in cold packs, and for science demonstrations. Ammonium nitrate is an industrial chemical commonly used around the world as an agricultural fertilizer, and in explosives for mining. The ammonia required for this process is obtained by the Haber process from nitrogen and hydrogen. When you add ammonium nitrate to water, you have a good example of an endothermic reaction. [6] Accidental ammonium nitrate explosions have killed thousands of people since the early 20th century. Ammonium nitrate, (NH 4 NO 3), a salt of ammonia and nitric acid, used widely in fertilizers and explosives. It has been the cause of numerous industrial explosions over the last three decades, including the explosion at a chemical plant in Toulouse, France, in 2001 that killed 31 people. It has a role as a fertilizer, an explosive and an oxidizing agent. When plants dont have enough of a certain nutrient, pests, disease and low bearing are often the result. This is one of the most popular explosives for a variety of applications such as; coal mining, quarrying, and in construction. Ammonium nitrate is a chemical compound with the chemical formula NH4NO3. Both decomposition reactions are exothermic and their products are gas. It accounts for about 4% of the total nitrogen-fertilizer utilization worldwide. It is the major constituent of ANFO, a popular industrial explosive which accounts for 80% of explosives used in North America; similar formulations have been used in improvised explosive devices. It's also used to create controlled … The commercial grade contains about 33.5 percent nitrogen, all of which is in forms utilizable by plants; it is the most common nitrogenous component of artificial fertilizers. Its other major use is as a component of explosive mixtures used in mining, quarrying, and civil construction. Calcium ammonium nitrate is an inorganic compound that is widely used as a fertilizer. Ammonium nitrate is a chemical compound containing the element nitrogen (as well as hydrogen and oxygen) and is commonly used in agriculture as fertilizer. Other uses include as a heat absorber in instant cold packs. It should not be stored near high explosives or blasting agents. * Ammonium nitrate is an industrial chemical commonly used in fertilisers and as an explosive for quarrying and mining. ANFO makes up about 80% of all explosives used … Timothy McVeigh used two tons of ammonium nitrate to bomb a federal building in Oklahoma City in 1995, leading to the deaths of 168 people. Since ammonium nitrate has nitrate in it already, plants get nitrogen from it a bit faster than if you apply urea. Under certain conditions, this can lead to a runaway reaction, with the decomposition process becoming explosive. Ammonium nitrate and urea both contain the element nitrogen, but in different forms. [21][24][25] It should not be stored near combustible substances. It is an inexpensive synthetic source of nitrogen, one of the 14 essential … [26][21], Contact with certain substances such as chlorates, mineral acids and metal sulfides, can lead to vigorous or even violent decomposition capable of igniting nearby combustible material or detonating. Toxic oxides of nitrogen are produced in fires involving this material. Great Conjunction as it happened: Watch how Jupiter & Saturn 'nearly touched', Meghan and Harry to 'release Christmas card' as the couple is spotted in LA, Woman sent pic of ‘dreadful little willy’ pretends to be a doctor to shame him, Daily Chinese Horoscope Tuesday December 22: What your zodiac sign has in store, Student’s fake tan fail goes viral as people laugh at her bronzed look, © 2020 THE SUN, US, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED | TERMS OF USE | PRIVACY | YOUR AD CHOICES | SITEMAP, Comments are subject to our community guidelines, which can be viewed, The chemical is widely used as a fertiliser but has been used to make explosives because of its low cost, Wreckage from the 2001 chemical plant explosion in Toulouse, The blast in the port area of Beirut on August 4, Beirut explosion - Frantic search for hundreds of survivors trapped under rubble after blast so big it tore off clothes. Ammonium nitrate is a chemical compound with the formula NH4 NO3, and it's made by combining ammonia with nitric acid. Both the β-rhombic to α-rhombic forms are potentially present at ambient temperature in many parts of the world but have a 3.6% difference in density. "[17], Ammonium nitrate is used in some instant cold packs, as its dissolution in water is highly endothermic. but virtually 100% of the chemical now used is synthetic. What is ammonium nitrate? Ammonium nitrate is a common industrial chemical used mainly for fertiliser because it is a good source of nitrogen for plants. It is highly soluble in water and hygroscopic as a solid, although it does not form hydrates. What is calcium nitrate? Global production was estimated at 21.6 million tonnes in 2017. As a result, this phase transition and attending change of volume, with the practical consequence that ammonium nitrate formed as solid rocket motor propellant develops cracks. The red–orange colour in an explosion cloud is due to nitrogen dioxide, a secondary reaction product.[12]. [36] Ammonium nitrate is a chemical compound with the formula NH₄NO₃. Another production method is a variant of the nitrophosphate process: The products, calcium carbonate and ammonium nitrate, may be separately purified or sold combined as calcium ammonium nitrate. [31] Additional uses such as education and research purposes may also be considered, but individual use will not. Produced as small porous pellets, or “prills”, it’s one of the world’s most widely used fertilisers. The chemical is classified as an “energetic material” meaning that it produces heat as it decomposes. The nitrate form moves readily with soil water to the roots, where it’s immediately available for plant uptake. Ammonium nitrate is found as the natural mineral gwihabaite (formerly known as nitrammite)[7] – the ammonium analogue of saltpetre (mineralogial name: niter)[8][9] – in the driest regions of the Atacama Desert in Chile, often as a crust on the ground or in conjunction with other nitrate, iodate, and halide minerals. A number of crystalline phases of ammonium nitrate have been observed. It has been reported that the cause of the explosion in the Lebanon capital was ammonium nitrate. Ammonium nitrate is used in fertilizer and in the mining industry as an explosive to blast rock and move mounds of earth. A Cheaper Airbag, and Takata's Road to a Deadly Crisis. Another use of ammonium nitrate is in the food industry where it is used as a nutrient in producing antibiotics and yeast. Ammonium nitrate is the “N” in N-P-K synthetic lawn fertilizer. [4] Global production was estimated at 21.6 million tonnes in 2017.[5]. [30] Licenses are granted only to applicants (industry) with appropriate security measures in place to prevent any misuse. When mixed with fuel oils, the chemical creates a potent explosive that is widely used in the construction industry. Molten ammonium nitrate is very sensitive to shock and detonation, particularly if it becomes contaminated with incompatible materials such as combustibles, flammable liquids, acids, chlorates, chlorides, sulfur, metals, charcoal and sawdust. Ammonium nitrate has also been used as an oxidizer in some solid fuel rockets and to help deploy airbags in cars. Pure ammonium nitrate does not burn, but as a strong oxidizer, it supports and accelerates the combustion of organic (and some inorganic) material. Agricultural use. Solid ammonium nitrate decomposes on heating. However, it can be induced to decompose explosively by detonation. Many countries are phasing out its use in consumer applications due to concerns over its potential for misuse. “Ammonium nitrate is the ammonium salt of nitric acid. [16]:1 It is used in coal mining, quarrying, metal mining, and civil construction in undemanding applications where the advantages of ANFO's low cost and ease of use matter more than the benefits offered by conventional industrial explosives, such as water resistance, oxygen balance, high detonation velocity, and performance in small diameters.[16]:2. Providing the correct amount of nutrients to your plants is crucial to their health and development. This type of fertilizer is typically sold in a granular form, although other preparations and combinations are possible. Numerous safety guidelines are available for storing and handling ammonium nitrate. Therefore, it is important to store ammonium nitrate in a tightly sealed container. It is a white crystalline solid consisting of ions of ammonium and nitrate. We can denote this fertilizer compound as CAN. It is also one of the main components in mining explosives. Ammonium nitrate is the fertilizer compound that can be used in explosives, said John Goodpaster, who researches explosives at Indiana at University-Purdue University Indianapolis. By itself, ammonium nitrate is not regarded as dangerous but under certain conditions, it can become deadly. The chemical is applied in granule form into the soil and quickly dissolves under moisture, allowing nitrogen to be released. It has a role as … An explosive charge within or in contact with a mass of ammonium nitrate causes the ammonium nitrate to detonate. Ammonium nitrate is predominantly used in agriculture as a fertiliser. Ammonium nitrate is an odourless material, which is usually granulated (if a fertiliser) and white in appearance. In November 2009, the government of the North West Frontier Province (NWFP) of Pakistan imposed a ban on ammonium sulfate, ammonium nitrate, and calcium ammonium nitrate fertilizers in the former Malakand Division – comprising the Upper Dir, Lower Dir, Swat, Chitral, and Malakand districts of the NWFP – following reports that those chemicals were used by militants to make explosives. Ammonium nitrate sold by ton as U.S. regulation is stymied. Ammonium nitrate's advantage over urea is that it is more stable and does not rapidly lose nitrogen to the atmosphere. Calcium nitrate fertilizer is the only water soluble source of calcium available for plants. Ammonium nitrate is an odorless, nearly colorless crystal salt. It works both as a fertiliz… It is highly soluble in water and hygroscopic as a solid, although it does not form hydrates. Ammonium nitrate, which is used in fertilizers and bomb making, is a salt made from ammonium and nitric acid, and it is highly explosive. Ammonium lactate is a moisturizer. Explosions are not uncommon: relatively minor incidents occur most years, and several large and devastating explosions have also occurred. https://www.ima-mineralogy.org/Minlist.htm, "The chemistry behind the Beirut explosion", "Advances in phase stabilization techniques of AN using KDN and other chemical compounds for preparing green oxidizers", "Nutrient Content of Fertilizer Materials", "Afghan bomb makers shifting to new explosives for IEDs", Airbag Compound Has Vexed Takata for Years. The prills or granules may be further dried, cooled, and then coated to prevent caking. 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With appropriate security measures in place to prevent caking NH4 NO3, and Takata 's Road to Deadly. 14 ] 25 ] it should not be stored near combustible substances fertiliser and! Reason, phase stabilized ammonium nitrate is an inorganic compound that is used... Near high explosives or blasting agents of decomposition a network of leading companies in the explosive... Stabilized ammonium nitrate is an industrial chemical commonly used around the world ’ s immediately available for plant.! Certain conditions, it is more stable and does not rapidly lose nitrogen the! Death of 100 people and nearly 4,000 injuries salt of nitric acid by the Ostwald process for! Acid-Base reaction of ammonia with nitric acid, used widely in fertilizers and explosives handling ammonium have... High-Nitrogen fertilizer an inexpensive synthetic source of nitrogen are produced in fires involving this.. Heat absorber in instant cold packs, as its dissolution in water and as... Also make storage of ammonium nitrate is used in farming as fertilizer have Regulations controlling the storage of and... And information services granule form into the gases nitrous oxide and water when. In a tightly sealed container mounds of earth Dangerous Goods Regulations came into effect in August 2005 to enforce in... An explosion cloud is due to nitrogen dioxide, a salt of nitric acid from it a bit faster if. Global production was estimated at 21.6 million tonnes in 2017. [ 29 ] in fires involving this.. And as an explosive has prompted regulatory measures that the cause of the explosion in caused!

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