Topics: Fertilizer, Nitrogen, Ammonia Pages: 4 (1043 words) Published: May 22, 2013
completion for soil tech
Fertilizer Intro
Fertilizer (or fertiliser) is any organic or inorganic material of natural or synthetic origin that is added to a soil to supply one or more plant nutrients essential to the growth of plants. The history of Fertilizers started from the Management of soil fertility that has been the pre-occupation of farmers for thousands of years. The start of the modern science of plant nutrition dates to the 19th century and the work of German chemist Justus von Liebig, among others. John Bennet Lawes, an English entrepreneur, began to experiment on the effects of various manures on plants growing in pots in 1837, and a year or two later the experiments were extended to crops in the field. One immediate consequence was that in 1842 he patented a manure formed by treating phosphates with sulphuric acid, and thus was the first to create the artificial manure industry. In the succeeding year he enlisted the services of Joseph Henry Gilbert, with whom he carried on for more than half a century on experiments in raising crops at the Rothamsted Experimental Station.[10] The Birkeland–Eyde process was one of the competing industrial processes in the beginning of nitrogen based fertilizer production. It was developed by Norwegian industrialist and scientist Kristian Birkeland along with his business partner Sam Eyde in 1903, based on a method used by Henry Cavendish in 1784.[11] This process was used to fix atmospheric nitrogen (N2) into nitric acid (HNO3), one of several chemical processes generally referred to as nitrogen fixation. The resultant nitric acid was then used as a source of nitrate (NO3-) in the reaction HNO3 → H+ + NO3-

which may take place in the presence of water or another proton acceptor. Nitrate is an ion which plants can absorb. A factory based on the process was built in Rjukan and Notodden in Norway, combined with the building...
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