Industrial fixation is a synthetic method of converting atmospheric nitrogen to nitrogen oxides or ammonium ions that plants and other organisms are able to use. Fertilizer manufacturers use these processes in creating their products.Continue Reading
Manufacturers have three forms of industrial fixation from which to choose, the most common of which is the Haber or Haber-Bosch process. It involves heating nitrogen and hydrogen in a pressurized vessel with iron as a catalyst. The reaction produces ammonia, which is useful for plants and ultimately those organisms that consume them. A second option is the cyanamide process. The manufacturer heats calcium carbide in an atmosphere of pure nitrogen to form calcium cyanamide, a plant fertilizer. The third option is the electric arc process. The arc causes nitrogen and oxygen in the air to form oxides that bubble through water to form nitric acid.
Even though living organisms require nitrogen for life, most are unable to break the strong triple bond between two nitrogen atoms when the substance is in its elemental form. The element must be fixed to be metabolized.
Over 90 percent of the nitrogen fixation in the world occurs through the natural process of lightening and microorganisms known as diazotrophs. Examples of diazotrophs include bacteria and blue-green algae. Other diazotrophs exist in symbiosis with termites, plants and protozoa.Learn more about Industries
The steps of the nitrogen cycle are nitrogen fixation, nitrification, ammonifcation and denitrification. During the first step, nitrogen fixation, special bacteria convert nitrogen gas into ammonia which is used by plants. The second step, nitrification, involves converting ammonia into nitrite ions that are taken by plants as nutrients.Full Answer >
Assimilation refers to the process by which plants and animals integrate the NO3- while forming ammonia through nitrogen fixation and nitrification. Plants absorb these types of nitrogen in form of nitrites, through their roots, and integrate them into plant proteins and nucleic acids. Animals obtain these forms of nitrogen by feeding on plant tissues.Full Answer >
Some common biological polyatomic ions include phosphate, which is incorporated into nucleic acids, and ammonium, which is a product of nitrogen fixation. Citrate is an important intermediate in the citric acid cycle. Polyatomic ions are essential components of biological systems, as well as industrial and household chemicals.Full Answer >
The path of nitrogen through its biogeochemical cycle involves the path it travels from the atmosphere through fixation in soil, uptake in animals and eventual release back into the atmosphere. The nitrogen biogeochemical cycle is extremely important for life on earth because nitrogen is needed for all of the major biological molecules, including amino acids, DNA and RNA.Full Answer >