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Concept information

Preferred term

nitrous oxide  

Definition

  • Nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, is a chemical compound with the formula N2O. It is an oxide of nitrogen. At room temperature, it is a colourless, non-flammable gas, with a slightly sweet odour and taste. It is used in surgery and dentistry for its anaesthetic and analgesic effects. It is known as \\"laughing gas\\" due to the euphoric effects of inhaling it, a property that has led to its recreational use as a dissociative anaesthetic. It is also used as an oxidizer in rocketry and in motor racing to increase the power output of engines. At elevated temperatures, nitrous oxide is a powerful oxidizer similar to molecular oxygen.

Broader concept

Entry terms

  • N20
  • N2O

Scope note

  • US LTER controlled vocabulary

Creator

  • herbert.schentz@umweltbundesamt.at

URI

http://vocabs.lter-europe.net/EnvThes/20852

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