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AMMONIA

Definition:
IUPAC: Azane
chemical compound made of molecules which each contain one atom of
nitrogen and three atoms of hydrogen
Molecular structure: NH3

PROPERTIES OF AMMONIA
a. PHYSICAL PROPERTIES
MM: 17.031 g/mole
Color: Colorless
Odor: Sharp, pungent odor
BP: 33.35 C (28.03 F)
FP: 77.7 C (107.8 F)
b. CHEMICAL PROPERTIES
Chemical Formula: NH3
Type of Base: Weak
Affinity(water): High
Corrosiveness: To some metals
Oxidation Power: Strong
Reactive: Quite
Volatility: Increases w/ pH
USES OF AMMONIA
Fertilizer
- applied in the form of either its salt or its solution form. These are Ammonium
Nitrate and Ammonium Sulfate.
Ammonium Nitrate (NH4NO3)
- used in high-nitrate fertilizers
Acid-Base reaction:
HNO3(aq) + NH3(g) NH4NO3(aq)
Ammonium Sulphate ((NH4)2SO4 )
- used mainly in fertilizer in the reduction of pH of the soil.
2 NH3 + H2SO4 (NH4)2SO4
Cleaner
- generally streak free
- used mainly in the cleaning of glass stainless steel and occasionally a stove
- usually contain 5 to 10% ammonia
Manufacture of Commercial Explosives
- e.g., trinitrotoluene (TNT), nitroglycerin, and nitrocellulose
Precursor to Nitrogenous Compounds
- Nitric Acid (HNO3)
Ostwald Process
- Urea ((NH2)2CO)

BoschMeiser urea process and Whler synthesis


- Hydrogen cyanide (HCN)
BMA process and Andrussow process

Used in Textile Industry


- manufacture of synthetic fibers
e.g., nylon and rayon
- dyeing and scouring of cotton, wool, and silk
Fermentation
- source of nitrogen for microorganisms and to adjust pH during fermentation
Antimicrobial Agent for Food Products
- currently used commercially to reduce or eliminate microbial contamination of
beef
Metallurgical Process
- nitriding of alloy sheets to harden their surfaces
Refrigeration
- used as a coolant in refrigeration and air conditioning equipment
HISTORY OF AMMONIA
1774 - Pure ammonia was first prepared by English physical scientist Joseph
Priestley
1785 - its exact composition was determined by French chemist Claude-Louis
Berthollet
1909 - The HaberBosch process to produce ammonia from the nitrogen in the
air was developed by Fritz Haber and Carl Bosch
1910 patented the HaberBosch process
1913 the commercial high pressure synthesis of ammonia was made possible
Before World War 1, most ammonia was obtained by:
the dry distillation of nitrogenous vegetable and animal products
the reduction of nitrous acid and nitrites with hydrogen
the decomposition of ammonium salts by alkaline hydroxides or by
quicklime, the salt most generally used being the ammonium chloride (sal
ammoniac)
TOP PRODUCERS OF AMMONIA

Source: Data - IFA; No.


of ammonia plants Zhang and Huang, 2013
IFA PIT Conference, Oct.
2013

HABER BOSCH
PROCESS
Nitrogen Sources: Pre Haber-Bosch Process
Manures (barnyard and other)
Guano (solidified bird excrement accumulated on subtrop/tropical
islands)
Chilean Nitrate (sodium nitrate)
CokeOven Gas (byproduct) Ammonium Sulfate
Coke oven gases produced primarily in the steel industry
Produced by reacting recovered coke oven ammonia with sulfuric acid
Nitrogen Fixation Processes:
Electric Arc Process
- Uses electrical current to combine N and oxygen in the air to form
nitric oxide (NO)
(NO) Nitric Acid Calcium Nitrate/Sodium Nitrate
Cyanamide Process
Limestone burned to form calcium oxide; fused with coke in electric furnace Calcium
carbide (CaC2) reacted with N at high temperature to form Calcium cyanamide (CaCN2)
ammonia; ammonium phosphates; nitric acid; ammonium nitrate

Source: Smil, 2001

Source: Morrison, 1937

Source: Morrison, 1937

Source: 1943-1979: U.S. Geological Survey; 19802012: IFA; Smil, 2001.

Haber-Bosch Process
N2 + 3 H2 2 NH3 (H = 92.4 kJmol1)
medium temperature (~500oC)
very high pressure (~250 atmospheres, ~351kPa)
a catalyst (a porous iron catalyst prepared by reducing magnetite, Fe3O4)

FLOWCHART

1st Step: Sulfur Removal


Feed: natural gas feedstock
H2 + RSH RH + H2S (g)
H2S + ZnO ZnS + H2O
nd
2 Step: Steam Methane Catalytic Reformer (Primary Reforming)
CH4 + H2O CO + 3H2
rd
3 Step: Secondary Reforming
H2 + air N2 + H2O
4th Step: Shift Conversion
CO + H2O CO2 + H2
th
5 Step: CO2 Removal
either by absorption in aqueous ethanolamine solutions

by adsorption in pressure swing adsorbers (PSA) using proprietary solid


adsorption media
th
6 Step: Methanation
CO + 3H2 CH4 + H2O
CO2 + 4H2 CH4 +2H2O
Last Step: Ammonia Synthesis (Haber Bosch Process)
3H2 + N2 2NH3

References:
http://www.firt.org/sites/default/files/2Vroomen.pdf
http://www.ias.ac.in/resonance/Volumes/16/12/1159-1167.pdf
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ammonia
http://www.britannica.com/science/ammonia
http://www.eoearth.org/view/article/170573/
http://www.nawabi.de/chemical/ammonia.asp
http://www.ch.ic.ac.uk/rzepa/mim/environmental/html/ammonia_text.htm
http://www.slideshare.net/brandonhardwicke/properties-of-ammonia
http://www.slideshare.net/brandonhardwicke/production-of-ammonia
http://www.slideshare.net/brandonhardwicke/ammonia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haber_process
http://www.chm.bris.ac.uk/motm/ammonia/Ammonia%20MOTM.htm