Energy Imparted by Active Nitrogen


SPECTROSCOPIC evidence1 shows that the maximum energy of excitation which a molecule of active nitrogen can impart to another molecule (or atom) is 9·45 eV. Lord Rayleigh, however, from a study of the incandescence of metals immersed in active nitrogen, finds2 that each molecule of active nitrogen delivers to the metal energy of, at the least, 10 eV. These apparently conflicting results can be reconciled and satisfactorily explained on the hypothesis recently proposed by me, namely, that active nitrogen is simply the ionized molecule of nitrogen N2+ (X') produced by the discharge.

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  1. 1

    Okubo, J., and Hamada, H., Phil. Mag., (7), 5, 272 (1928).

  2. 2

    Rayleigh Lord, Proc. Roy. Soc., A, 176, 17 (1940).

  3. 3

    Mitra, S. K., Science and Culture (Calcutta), 9, 49 (1942–43) ; 10, 133 (1944–45); Nature, 154, 212 and 576 (1944).

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