Tag Archives: JEE Chemistry Notes

Nitrogen & Its Compounds

I. Dinitrogen

Nitrogen is a very important part of our atmosphere. It forms 78% of our atmosphere by volume and 75% by mass.

Preparation : We have two types of productions of Nitrogen:

Commercial production : The commercial production of Nitrogen is done by the liquifaction and fractional distillation of air.

Lab production : In lab Nitrogen can be produced by several methods-

I. When aqueous solution of ammonium chloride is treated with sodium nitrite.

NH4Cl(aq)+NaNO2(aq)→ N2(g) + 2H2O(l) + NaCl(aq)

II. Dinitrogen can also be obtained by the thermal decomposition of ammonium dicromate.

(NH4)2Cr2O7 →N2(g) + 2H2O(l) + Cr2O3

III. Thermal decomposition of sodium or barium azide also gives dinitrogen. Nitrogen obtained by this method is very pure.

Ba(N3)2 → Ba + 3N2

II. Ammonia()

Ammonia was detected by Priestley in 1774. It is generally formed by the bacterial decomposition of nitrogenous matter found in plants and animals. We can find it in a very less amount in air and soil.

Commercial production: Ammonia is produced by Haber’s process commercially. In this process we prepare a setup with following optimum conditions:

1. Pressure :200 × 105 Pa or 200 atm(Approx), 2. Temperature : About 700 K & 3. Catalyst : Iron oxide with small amount of K2O & Al2O3.


Under these conditions ammonia is produced by the reaction : N2(g) + 3H2(g) → 2NH3(g)

The catalyst is used to increase the production rate of NH3.

III. Oxides of Nitrogen

Nitrogen reacts with oxygen to form different oxides with different oxidation state

1. N2O -Dinitrogen Oxide or Nitrous Oxide or Laughing Gas:

Oxidation state of Nitrogen: 1

Preparation: It can be produced by heating ammonium nitrate.

NH4NO3 N2O + 2H2O


Properties : 1. Nitrous oxide is a colourless gas.

2. It is a has with sweet taste and pleasant odour.

3. It can create laughter when inhaling in a sufficient amount due to which it is called laughing gas.

4. It is soluble in cold water but not in hot water.

5. Nitrous oxide is heavier than air.

Uses : 1. As propellant, 2. As anaesthetic in minor surgical operations with oxygen

II. HNO3-Nitric Acid

Commercial Preparation(Ostwald Process):

The mixture of ammonia and air when passed over platinum gauze catalyst at 7500C-9000C, then ammonia is oxidised to nitric acid.

4NH3+5O2 – 4NO + 6H2O

By oxidising, the nitric oxide is converted to nitrogen dioxide.

2NO + O2 – 2 NO2

When nitrogen dioxide is cooled and absorbed in water, nitric acid is obtained.

3NO2 + H2O – 2HNO3 + NO

Lab Preparation: In the laboratory, nitric acid is formed by heating the mixture of KNO3 or NaNO3 and concentrated H2SO4 in a glass retort.

KNO3 + H2SO4 – KHSO4 + HNO3

NaNO3 + H2SO4 – NaHSO4 + HNO3

The Nitrogen Family

Elements in 15th group are known as ‘The Nitrogen Family’. The family includes the following elements:

Element Atomic Number Electronic Configuration Character
N 7 1s22s22p3 Non-metal
P 15 1s22s22p63s23p3 Non-metal
As 33 1s22s22p63s23p6 3d104s24p3 Metalloid
Sb 51 1s22s22p63s23p6 3d104s24p64d105s25p3 Metalloid
Bi 81 1s22s22p63s23p6 3d104s24p64d10 4f145s25p65d106s26p3 Metal

Occcurence : Nitrogen – Nitrogen is found in the molecular form in the atmosphere. It comprises 75% by mass and 78% by volume of the atmosphere. It is also found in Earth’s crust in the form of Chile Saltpetre(Sodium Nitrate : NaNO3) and Indian Saltpetre(Potassium Nitrate-KNO3). In the form of protein, Nitrogen is also available in plants and animals.

Reactivity towards oxygen : Group 15 elements form oxides by reacting with oxygen of the form E2O3, E2O4 and E2O.Ex: N2O3, N2O4, P2O5, As2Oetc. 

Key Points : 1. Among oxides the acidic nature increases with increase in the oxidation state.

2. The acidic nature also increases with increase in the percentage of oxygen.

3. In the group, the acidic nature decrease with increase in atomic number due to increase in the metallic character.

E2O3 Type Oxides of


Nitrogen & Phosphorus

Purely acidic

Arsenic & Antimony




4. The stability of oxides decreases down the group.

Reactivity towards Hydrogen : Group 15 elements react with Hydrogen to form hydrides of the form EH3. Ex : NH3 (Ammonia), PH3 (Phosphine), BiH3 (Bismuthine) etc.

Key Points : 1. The thermal stability decreases down the group because the tendency to form covalent bond decreases as the size of atoms increases which leads to increase in the metallic character.


Classification of Crystalline Solids

In this topic, we have to discuss the types of crystalline solids. Crystalline solids are classified into four categories as follows:

1. Molecular solids: Solids whose constituent particles are molecules are called molecular solids.

Molecular solids are of three types:

I. Non-polar molecular solids: A solid in which the constituent particles are held by weak dispersion forces or London forces are called non-polar molecular solids.

Ex: H2, O2, N2, Noble gases like He, Ne, Ar, Kr etc

II. Polar molecular solids: A solid in which the constituent particles are held by dipole-dipole forces is called a polar solid.

Ex: HCl, NH3, SO2 etc

III. Hydrogen bonded molecular solids: A solid in which the constituent particles are held by Hydrogen bond is called a hydrogen bonded molecular solids.

Ex: Ice, HF etc

2. Covalent or network solids: A solid in which the constituent particles form a huge network of very strong covalent bonds is called a covalent or network solid.

Ex: Diamond, Graphite, Silica, Silicon Carbide etc.

3. Ionic solids: A solid whose constituent particles are ions is called an ionic solid.

Ex: NaCl, MgCl2 etc

4. Metallic solids: A solid whose constituent particles are atoms of a metal is called a metallic solid.

Ex: Fe, Cu, Zn etc.

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