Addison, Cyril C. University of Nottingham, Nottingham, United Kingdom.
Last reviewed:August 2018
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- Nitrous oxide and nitric oxide
- Dioxide and tetroxide
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Chemical compounds of nitrogen and oxygen (NOx); also known as oxides of nitrogen. Nitrogen and oxygen do not combine when mixed directly (as in air), but they do combine during chemical reactions of compounds containing them. Nitrogen oxides (primarily NO and NO2) are produced primarily from the burning of fossil fuels by cars, trucks, buses, and power plants, and contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone, which is a major cause of smog. In addition, NOx in the atmosphere causes acid rain and contributes to nutrient pollution in coastal waters. Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a greenhouse gas. See also: Acid rain; Air pollution; Greenhouse effect; Nitrogen; Oxygen; Ozone; Smog
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