   Chapter 20, Problem 45GQ

Chapter
Section
Textbook Problem

The nitrogen cycle (Figure 20.1) shows the oxidation of NH4+, first to NO2− and then the subsequent oxidation of NO2− to NO3−. Write balanced equations for each of these half-reactions (in acid solution).

Interpretation Introduction

Interpretation: The balanced equations for the reactions in nitrogen cycle have to be given.

Concept introduction:

Nitrogen cycle: The cycle by which conversion of nitrogen into various chemical forms are done through biological and physical process.

Nitrogen cycle is an important process in-order to balance the eco system. The conversion of nitrogen into its oxidation state is the most important thing.

Explanation

Nitrogen cycle is an important process by which atmospheric nitrogen is converted into various forms.

Around 50% of nitrogen is converted into various compounds by biological process and 10% by lightening. Another 10% is from manufactured fertilizers and 30% from burning of fossil fuels.

Nitrogen fixation is the first step in which the nitrogen is converted into ammonia or ammonium ion. Using the enzyme nitrogenase , the bond between molecular nitrogen can be break and the enzyme works only in the absence of oxygen.

Next step is nitrification in which NH3orNH4+ is converted into NO3  First the conversion to NO2 is done by the bacteria Nitrosomonas and then Nitrobacter converts NO2 to NO3. The balanced chemical equations for these reactions are:

Balanced equation for oxidation of NH4+toNO2:

NH4(aq)+2H2

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