History and Preparation: Joseph Priestley discovered nitrous oxide
gas in 1772.
Priestley first made N2O by heating ammonium nitrate (NH4NO3)
in the presence of iron filings, and then passing NO (the generated gas)
through H2O removing any toxic by-products.
2NO + H2O + Fe N2O +
nitrous oxide can be commonly made in the laboratory by fusing and boiling NH4NO3
to produce steam, N2O, N2, NH4NO3 'fog'
and small amounts of very toxic higher oxides of nitrogen (i.e. NO2,
N2O + 2H2O, H = -36.8
Click on the picture above
with the 3D model of the
N2O Gas structure
Name: Dinitrogen oxide