Ammonia (also called azane) is a compound of Hydrogen and Nitrogen with a molecular formula NH3. It is a colourless gas and has a characteristic pungent smell. Ammonia gas is highly soluble in water and can be used in different ways. Here are some uses and benefits of ammonia:
1. Agricultural Fertilizer
Mostly, anhydrous ammonia is used as agricultural fertilizer. Anhydrous ammonia is that ammonia which doesn’t contain water. More than 80% of manufactured ammonia is used as agricultural fertilizer worldwide.
Ammonia is an effective stain-remover and is widely used for removing stains from tiles, grease splatters on the stove and other dirty surfaces.
3. For cleaning electric oven
A dilute water-solution of ammonia can be used to clean electric ovens. The solution effectively removes the grease stains or other burned food from the inside of the oven.
4. Sparkling mirrors and windows
A dilute water-solution of ammonia is very effective in cleaning mirrors and windows. It removes fingerprints and all kinds of other stains from windows and mirrors and within a minute you get a sparkling window/mirror.
5. For making various compounds
Ammonia is used for making a number of compounds including Hydrogen cyanide, Hydrazine, Hydroxylamine, Ammonium carbonate, Phenol, Urea, Amino acids, etc.
Ammonia solutions are used in the fermentation industry where they act as the sources of nitrogen for microorganisms. They also adjust pH during the fermentation process.
7. Antimicrobial agent
Ammonia is an effective antimicrobial agent and anhydrous ammonia is commercially used to eliminate microbial contamination of beef. It is also considered as a strong antiseptic.
8. As a fuel
Liquid ammonia has a raw energy density of 11.5 MJ/L that is about a third that of diesel and can be used as a fuel for motor-vehicles. However, for some reasons it is not being used as a fuel.