EARTH SCIENCE > ATMOSPHERE > ATMOSPHERIC CHEMISTRY > NITROGEN COMPOUNDS > MOLECULAR NITROGEN
Nitrogen (N2) is a colorless, tasteless, odorless gas which makes up 78.1%
of the atmosphere. Atmospheric nitrogen is converted by nitrogen fixation
and nitrification into compounds used by plants and animals. In the far
upper atmosphere, N2 is broken down when large numbers of energetic
secondary electrons are produced and available to react with the N2. This
leads to the eventual production of NO. (Crutzen, Paul J. and T.E.
Graedel, Atmospheric Change. W.H. Freeman and Company, New York, 147.)
(Webster's New World Dictionary. Prentice Hall, New York, 918.)
Atmospheric and Air Chemistry Glossary from the Sam Houston State University.