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.Know More
After living organisms have used the nitrogen, the next step in the cycle is ammonification, in which decomposing bacteria convert the waste compounds that are rich in nitrogen into simpler compounds.
The last step in the nitrogen cycle is denitrification, wherein bacteria convert simple nitrogen compounds back into nitrogen gas, which then returns to the atmosphere and starts the cycle again. In this cycle, plants absorb nitrogen, and then animals consume the plants. When bacteria decompose the animals, nitrogen is released back into the soil, leading into a continuous and repetitive cycle. Nitrogen is converted into different chemical forms, with both biological and non-biological methods used in the cycle.
Nitrogen is the most abundant and most valuable gas for all organisms on Earth. It exists in proteins which are the building blocks of life among humans and all other organisms. Although nitrogen is a component of air, it is not in usable form; that’s why bacteria need to convert the atmospheric nitrogen into compounds that living beings can use, and this process is the nitrogen cycle.Learn more about Chemistry
Humans affect the nitrogen cycle through activities that increase the amount of nitrogen that is biologically available in an ecosystem. The major culprits are fossil fuel combustion and the application of nitrogen-based fertilizer. Fossil fuel combustion releases nitric oxides and combines with other elements in the air to form smog and acid rain.Full Answer >
In nature, nitrous oxide comes from the nitrogen cycle. This greenhouse gas also comes from the burning of oil products and the use of synthetic fertilizers.Full Answer >
The melting point of nitrogen is -346 degrees Fahrenheit. Liquid nitrogen boils at about -320 degrees Fahrenheit. At room temperature, pure nitrogen is a gas.Full Answer >
Nitrogen takes its name from the Greek language; the words "nitron" and "genes" combine to form "forming saltpeter." Daniel Rutherford, a Scottish scientist, discovered nitrogen in 1772 and gave it its name.Full Answer >