ammonium nitrate

noun Chemistry.
a white, crystalline, water-soluble powder, NH 4 NO 3 , usually produced by reacting nitric acid with vaporous ammonia: used chiefly in explosives, fertilizers, freezing mixtures, and in the manufacture of nitrous oxide.

Origin:
1880–85

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Collins
World English Dictionary
ammonium nitrate
 
n
a colourless highly soluble crystalline solid used mainly as a fertilizer and in explosives and pyrotechnics. Formula: NH4NO3

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
ammonium nitrate  
A colorless crystalline salt used in fertilizers, explosives, and solid rocket propellants. Chemical formula: NH4NO3.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

ammonium nitrate

(NH4NO3), a salt of ammonia and nitric acid, used widely in fertilizers and explosives. The commercial grade contains about 33.5 percent nitrogen, all of which is in forms utilizable by plants; it is the most common nitrogenous component of artificial fertilizers. Ammonium nitrate also is employed to modify the detonation rate of other explosives, such as nitroglycerin in the so-called ammonia dynamites, or as an oxidizing agent in the ammonals, which are mixtures of ammonium nitrate and powdered aluminum.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Ammonium nitrate was used primarily in solid and liquid fertilizers, in industrial explosives, and as blasting agents.
Fertilizer grade ammonium nitrate and fuel oil was mixed and detonated with a blasting cap or some other controlled explosive.
The plant will produce ammonium nitrate in liquid form.
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