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Description References
Ammonia structure
Chemical Name:
Molecular Formula:
Formula Weight:
MOL File:

Ammonia Properties

Melting point:
−78 °C(lit.)
Boiling point:
60 °C
1.023 g/mL at 25 °C
vapor density 
0.6 (vs air)
vapor pressure 
8.75 atm ( 21 °C)
Flash point:
52 °F
storage temp. 
Miscible with ethanol (95%) and water.
38(at 25℃)
Intense pungent odor detectable at 17 ppm
explosive limit
Water Solubility 
Exposure limits
TLV-TWA 25 ppm (~18 mg/m3) (ACGIH and MSHA), 50 ppm (OSHA); STEL 35 ppm; IDLH 500 ppm (NIOSH).
Stable. Hygroscopic. Flammable. Incompatible with acids, strong oxidizing agents. May react violently with acids, aldehydes, alkylene oxides, amides, boron, boron halides, calcium, chlorine azide, chloric acid, chlorine monoxide, chlorites, halogens, heavy metals and many other materials - check the complete data sheet before use!
CAS DataBase Reference
7664-41-7(CAS DataBase Reference)
NIST Chemistry Reference
EPA Substance Registry System
  • Risk and Safety Statements
  • Hazard and Precautionary Statements (GHS)
  • NFPA
Hazard Codes  F,N,T,Xn
Risk Statements  11-20-36/37/38-67-39/23/24/25-23/24/25-10-50-34-23-36-66-40-36/37-19
Safety Statements  26-7-45-36/37/39-16-9-61-36/37
RIDADR  UN 1219 3/PG 2
WGK Germany  2
RTECS  BO0875000
Autoignition Temperature 690 °C
HazardClass  3
PackingGroup  II
Hazardous Substances Data 7664-41-7(Hazardous Substances Data)
Toxicity LD50 oral (rat) 350 mg/kg
LC50 inhal (rat) 2000 ppm (4 h)
PEL (OSHA) 35 ppm (27 mg/m3)
TLV-TWA (ACGIH) 25 ppm (17 mg/m3)
STEL (ACGIH) 35 ppm (27 mg/m3)
Signal word: Danger
Hazard statements:
Code Hazard statements Hazard class Category Signal word Pictogram P-Codes
H221 Flammable gas Flammable gases Category 2 Warning P210, P377, P381, P403
H225 Highly Flammable liquid and vapour Flammable liquids Category 2 Danger P210,P233, P240, P241, P242, P243,P280, P303+ P361+P353, P370+P378,P403+P235, P501
H280 Contains gas under pressure; may explode if heated Gases under pressure Compressed gas
Liquefied gas
Dissolved gas
Warning P410+P403
H301 Toxic if swalloed Acute toxicity,oral Category 3 Danger P264, P270, P301+P310, P321, P330,P405, P501
H302 Harmful if swallowed Acute toxicity,oral Category 4 Warning P264, P270, P301+P312, P330, P501
H303 May be harmfulif swallowed Acute toxicity,oral Category 5 P312
H311 Toxic in contact with skin Acute toxicity,dermal Category 3 Danger P280, P302+P352, P312, P322, P361,P363, P405, P501
H314 Causes severe skin burns and eye damage Skin corrosion/irritation Category 1A, B, C Danger P260,P264, P280, P301+P330+ P331,P303+P361+P353, P363, P304+P340,P310, P321, P305+ P351+P338, P405,P501
H315 Causes skin irritation Skin corrosion/irritation Category 2 Warning P264, P280, P302+P352, P321,P332+P313, P362
H318 Causes serious eye damage Serious eye damage/eye irritation Category 1 Danger P280, P305+P351+P338, P310
H319 Causes serious eye irritation Serious eye damage/eye irritation Category 2A Warning P264, P280, P305+P351+P338,P337+P313P
H331 Toxic if inhaled Acute toxicity,inhalation Category 3 Danger P261, P271, P304+P340, P311, P321,P403+P233, P405, P501
H334 May cause allergy or asthma symptoms or breathing difficulties if inhaled Sensitisation, respiratory Category 1 Danger P261, P285, P304+P341, P342+P311,P501
H335 May cause respiratory irritation Specific target organ toxicity, single exposure;Respiratory tract irritation Category 3 Warning
H336 May cause drowsiness or dizziness Specific target organ toxicity,single exposure; Narcotic effects Category 3 Warning P261, P271, P304+P340, P312,P403+P233, P405, P501
H340 May cause genetic defects Germ cell mutagenicity Category 1A, 1B Danger
H341 Suspected of causing genetic defects Germ cell mutagenicity Category 2 Warning P201,P202, P281, P308+P313, P405,P501
H351 Suspected of causing cancer Carcinogenicity Category 2 Warning P201, P202, P281, P308+P313, P405,P501
H360 May damage fertility or the unborn child Reproductive toxicity Category 1A, 1B Danger
H361 Suspected of damaging fertility or the unborn child Reproductive toxicity Category 2 Warning P201, P202, P281, P308+P313, P405,P501
H370 Causes damage to organs Specific target organ toxicity, single exposure Category 1 Danger P260, P264, P270, P307+P311, P321,P405, P501
H372 Causes damage to organs through prolonged or repeated exposure Specific target organ toxicity, repeated exposure Category 1 Danger P260, P264, P270, P314, P501
H373 May cause damage to organs through prolonged or repeated exposure Specific target organ toxicity, repeated exposure Category 2 Warning P260, P314, P501
H401 Toxic to aquatic life Hazardous to the aquatic environment, acute hazard Category 2 P273, P501
H410 Very toxic to aquatic life with long lasting effects Hazardous to the aquatic environment, long-term hazard Category 1 Warning P273, P391, P501
H411 Toxic to aquatic life with long lasting effects Hazardous to the aquatic environment, long-term hazard Category 2
H412 Harmful to aquatic life with long lasting effects Hazardous to the aquatic environment, long-term hazard Category 3 P273, P501
Precautionary statements:
P201 Obtain special instructions before use.
P202 Do not handle until all safety precautions have been read and understood.
P210 Keep away from heat/sparks/open flames/hot surfaces. — No smoking.
P233 Keep container tightly closed.
P240 Ground/bond container and receiving equipment.
P260 Do not breathe dust/fume/gas/mist/vapours/spray.
P261 Avoid breathing dust/fume/gas/mist/vapours/spray.
P264 Wash hands thoroughly after handling.
P264 Wash skin thouroughly after handling.
P270 Do not eat, drink or smoke when using this product.
P271 Use only outdoors or in a well-ventilated area.
P273 Avoid release to the environment.
P280 Wear protective gloves/protective clothing/eye protection/face protection.
P281 Use personal protective equipment as required.
P284 Wear respiratory protection.
P310 Immediately call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician.
P311 Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician.
P377 Leaking gas fire: Do not extinguish, unless leak can be stopped safely.
P391 Collect spillage. Hazardous to the aquatic environment
P301+P310 IF SWALLOWED: Immediately call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician.
P303+P361+P353 IF ON SKIN (or hair): Remove/Take off Immediately all contaminated clothing. Rinse SKIN with water/shower.
P305+P351+P338 IF IN EYES: Rinse cautiously with water for several minutes. Remove contact lenses, if present and easy to do. Continuerinsing.
P307+P311 IF exposed: call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician.
P370+P378 In case of fire: Use … for extinction.
P403 Store in a well-ventilated place.
P405 Store locked up.
P403+P233 Store in a well-ventilated place. Keep container tightly closed.
P403+P235 Store in a well-ventilated place. Keep cool.

NFPA 704

Diamond Hazard Value Description
Flammability   1 Materials that require considerable preheating, under all ambient temperature conditions, before ignition and combustion can occur. Includes some finely divided suspended solids that do not require heating before ignition can occur. Flash point at or above 93.3 °C (200 °F). (e.g. mineral oil, ammonia)
Instability   0 Normally stable, even under fire exposure conditions, and is not reactive with water (e.g. helium,N2)

(NFPA, 2010)

Ammonia price More Price(23)

Manufacturer Product number Product description CAS number Packaging Price Updated Buy
Sigma-Aldrich 341428 Ammonia solution 2.0M in methanol 7664-41-7 100ml $80.4 2018-11-20 Buy
Sigma-Aldrich 341428 Ammonia solution 2.0M in methanol 7664-41-7 4x100ml $274 2018-11-20 Buy
TCI Chemical A1884 Ammonia (ca. 4% in Methanol, ca. 2.0mol/L) 7664-41-7 500mL $100 2018-11-22 Buy
TCI Chemical A2236 Ammonia (ca. 4% in Ethanol, ca. 2.0mol/L) 7664-41-7 500mL $94 2018-11-22 Buy
Alfa Aesar H27080 Ammonia, 2M in methanol 7664-41-7 1000ml $202 2018-11-13 Buy

Ammonia Chemical Properties,Uses,Production


Ammonia (chemical formula: NH3) is a compound of nitrogen and hydrogen. As a colorless pungent gas, it is highly soluble in water to become the liquid ammonia. It is also one of the most abundant nitrogen-containing compound in the atmosphere. It provides the fundamental nutrients demands for various kinds of organisms by serving as a precursor of their food and fertilizer. It is also important for various kinds of biological processes. In addition, it serves as a building blocks of many kinds of commercially important nitrogen compounds as well as pharmaceutical products. The major application of ammonia is acting as the fertilizer to supply the nitrogen source of plants and animals. It is used in the manufacture of commercial explosive such as TNT. It is applied to textile industry for the manufacture of nylon and rayon, the dyeing and scouring of cotton and silk as well as being used as a catalyst in the production of some synthetic resins. It also has applications in various metallurgical processes and fermentation processes. It can even be used as a cleaner and antimicrobial reagent in the food. Finally, it is also an important routine reagent used in lab. For example, liquid ammonia is a common solvent in the lab. In current days, ammonia is produced by the Haber-Bosch process which has industrial hydrogen be reacted with atmospheric nitrogen under high temperature and pressure in the presence of catalyst. For small-scale lab synthesis, ammonia can also be manufactured through the heating of urea and Ca (OH)2. Low concentration of ammonia has no significant effect on human beings. However, exposure to high concentration of gaseous ammonia can result in lung damage and even death, thus protective measures should be taken during the operation.



Ammonia is a colorless, pungent-smelling gas that is one of the most important industrial inorganic chemicals. It is widely used in fertilizers, refrigerants, explosives, cleaning agents, and as a feedstock to produce numerous other chemicals. Ammonia ranks as one of the top 10 chemicals produced annually.

Chemical Properties

Strong ammonia solution occurs as a clear, colorless liquid having an exceedingly pungent, characteristic odor. The PhEur 6.0 states that concentrated ammonia solution contains not less than 25.0% and not more than 30.0% w/w of ammonia (NH3). The USP32– NF27 states that strong ammonia solution contains not less than 27.0% and not more than 31.0% w/w of ammonia (NH3).

Chemical Properties

Ammonia, NH3, is a colorless gaseous alkaline compound. It is very soluble in water, has a highly characteristic pungent odor, is lighter than air, and is formed as a result of the decomposition of most nitrogenous organic materials. Anhydrous ammonia, a major commercial chemical, is used in the manufacture of fertilizers, HN03, acrylonitrile, and other products, and as an electrolytic solvent.

Chemical Properties

Ammonia is a colorless, strongly alkaline, and extremely soluble gas with a pungent, suffocating odor.


During the Middle Ages ammonia was produced by the distillation of animal dung, hooves, and horn. Its preparation from horn gave it another name: spirit of hartshorn. Joseph Priestley (1733–1804) isolated ammonia in 1774 and called the compound alkaline air. The modern name ammonia was given to the compound in 1782 by the Swedish chemist Torbern Bergman (1735–1784). The exact chemical composition was determined by Claude-Louis Berthollet (1748–1822) in 1785. During the 19th century ammonia was obtained from the distillation of coal tar. The importance of nitrogen fertilizers in agriculture was established during the mid-1800s, and this coupled with the growth of the chemical industry provided incentive to find a method for fixing nitrogen.


Ammonia is a major feedstock for fertilizer, explosives, plastics, and other chemicals. The primary use of ammonia is in the production of fertilizers, with approximately 70% of ammonia being used for this purpose. Major fertilizers produced include ammonium nitrate, ammonium sulfate, and urea.


NH3 (ammonia) is produced in the so-called Haber Bosch process. This industrial process uses finely divided iron as catalyst and a reaction temperature of around 450 °C at a pressure of 50 atm. Ammonia is used to produce fertilisers, nitric acid, nylon and many more products important to our modern life style.
N2(g) + 3H2(g) → 2NH3(g)


Ammonia is used in the manufacture of nitricacid, hydrazine hydrate, and acrylonitrile, aswell as fertilizers, explosives, and syntheticfibers. It is also used in refrigeration.


Reagent for chemical vapor deposition of TiN.1


Fertilizer, corrosion inhibitor, purification of water supplies, component of household cleaners, as refrigerant. manufacture of nitric acid, explosives, synthetic fibers, fertilizers. In pulp and paper, metallurgy, rubber, food and beverage, textile and leather industries.


Ammonia is a large-tonnage industrial product and finds its major use in the manufacture of nitric acid and fertilizers. It is the most commonly used refrigerant, particularly for large industrial installations.


Ammonia is a large-tonnage industrial product and finds its major use in the manufacture of nitric acid and fertilizers. The aqueous solution is widely used in the chemical industry.


Ammonia is a large-tonnage industrial product and finds its major use in the manufacture of nitric acid and fertilizer. The aqueous solution is widely used in the chemical industry, mostly as refrigerant. Product Data Sheet


ChEBI: An azane that consists of a single nitrogen atom covelently bonded to three hydrogen atoms.


A colorless gas with a characteristic pungent odor. On cooling and compression it forms a colorless liquid, which becomes a white solid on further cooling. Ammonia is very soluble in water (a saturated solution at 0°C contains 36.9% of ammonia): the aqueous solution is alkaline and contains a proportion of free ammonia. Ammonia is also soluble in ethanol. It occurs naturally to a small extent in the atmosphere, and is usually produced in the laboratory by heating an ammonium salt with a strong alkali. Ammonia is synthesized industrially from hydrogen and atmospheric nitrogen by the Haber process.
The compound does not burn readily in air but ignites, giving a yellowish-brown flame, in oxygen. It will react with atmospheric oxygen in the presence of platinum or a heavy metal catalyst – a reaction used as the basis of the commercial manufacture of nitric acid, which involves the oxidation of ammonia to nitrogen monoxide and then to nitrogen dioxide. Ammonia coordinates readily to form ammines and reacts with sodium or potassium to form inorganic amides and with acids to form ammonium salts; for example, it reacts with hydrogen chloride to form ammonium chloride:
NH3(g) + HCl(g) → NH4Cl(g)
Ammonia is also used commercially in the manufacture of fertilizers, mainly ammonium nitrate, urea, and ammonium sulfate. It is used to a smaller extent in the refrigeration industry. Liquid ammonia is an excellent solvent for certain substances, which ionize in the solutions to give ionic reactions similar to those occurring in aqueous solutions. Ammonia is marketed as the liquid, compressed in cylinders (‘anhydrous ammonia’), or as aqueous solutions of various strengths. See also ammonium hydroxide.


ammonia: A colourless gas, NH3, with a strong pungent odour; r.d. 0.59 (relative to air); m.p. –77.7°C; b.p. –33.35°C. It is very soluble in water and soluble in alcohol. The compound may be prepared in the laboratory by reacting ammonium salts with bases such as calcium hydroxide, or by the hydrolysis of a nitride. Industrially it is made by the Haber process and over 80 million tonnes per year are used either directly or in combination. Major uses are the manufacture of nitric acid, ammonium nitrate, ammonium phosphate, and urea (the last three as fertilizers), explosives, dyestuffs and resins.
Liquid ammonia has some similarity to water as it is hydrogen bonded and has a moderate dielectric constant, which permits it to act as an ionizing solvent. It is weakly selfionized to give ammonium ions, NH4+and amide ions, NH2-. It also dissolves electropositive metals to give blue solutions, which are believed to contain solvated electrons. Ammonia is extremely soluble in water giving basic solutions that contain solvated NH3 molecules and small amounts of the ions NH4+ and OH-. The combustion of ammonia in air yields nitrogen and water. In the presence of catalysts NO, NO2, and water are formed; this last reaction is the basis for the industrial production of nitric acid. Ammonia is a good proton acceptor (i.e. it is a base) and gives rise to a series of ammonium salts, e.g.NH3 + HCl → NH4+ + Cl-.
It is also a reducing agent.
The participation of ammonia in the nitrogen cycle is a most important natural process. Nitrogen-flxing bacteria are able to achieve similar reactions to those of the Haber process, but under normal conditions of temperature and pressure. These release ammonium ions, which are converted by nitrifying bacteria into nitrite and nitrate ions.

Production Methods

The Haber process for the synthesis of ammonia is based on the reaction of nitrogen and hydrogen: N2(g) + 3H2(g) ? 2NH3(g). Nitrogen in the reaction is obtained by separating nitrogen from air through liquefaction, and hydrogen is obtained from natural gas by steam reforming: CH4(g) + H2O(g) → H2(g) + CO(g) According to Le Chatelier’s principle, the production of ammonia is favored by a high pressure and a low temperature. The Haber process is typically carried out at pressures between 200 and 400 atmospheres and temperatures of 500°C. In the commercial production of ammonia, NH3 is continually removed as it is produced.

Production Methods

Ammonia is obtained commercially chiefly by synthesis from its constituent elements, nitrogen and hydrogen, which are combined under high pressure and temperature in the presence of a catalyst. Ammonia solution is produced by dissolving ammonia gas in water.

Air & Water Reactions

Soluble in water with evolution of heat. The amount of heat generated may be large.

Reactivity Profile

AMMONIA is a base. Reacts exothermically with all acids. Violent reactions are possible. Readily combines with silver oxide or mercury to form compounds that explode on contact with halogens. When in contact with chlorates Ammonia forms explosive ammonium chlorate [Kirk-Othmer, 3rd ed., Vol. 2, 1978, p. 470]. Reacts violently or produces explosive products with fluorine, chlorine, bromine and iodine and some of the interhalogen compounds (bromine pentafluoride, chlorine trifluoride). Mixing of bleaching powder (hypochlorite solution) with ammonia solutions produces toxic/explosive ammonia trichloride vapors. Undergoes potentially violent or explosive reactions on contact with 1,2-dichloroethane (with liquid ammonia), boron halides, ethylene oxide (polymerization), perchlorates or strong oxidants (chromyl chloride, chromium trioxide, chromic acid, nitric acid, hydrogen peroxide, chlorates, fluorine, nitrogen oxide, liquid oxygen). Reacts with silver chloride, silver oxide, silver nitrate or silver azide to form the explosive silver nitride. May react with some heavy metal compounds (mercury, gold(III) chloride) to produce materials that may explode when dry. [Bretherick, 5th ed., 1995, p. 1553].


Inhalation of concentrated fumes may be fatal. Moderate fire risk, explosive limits in air 16– 25%. Forms explosive compounds in contact with silver or mercury. Eye damage and upper respiratory tract irritant.

Health Hazard

Ammonia is intensely irritating to the eyes,nose, and respiratory tract. Toxic effectsinclude lachrymation, respiratory distress,chest pain, and pulmonary edema. A concentration of 10 ppm may be detected by odor;irritation of eyes and nose is perceptible atabout 200 ppm. A few minutes of exposureto 3000 ppm can be intolerable, causing seri ous blistering of the skin, lung edema, andasphyxia, leading to death. It is corrosive toskin because it reacts with moisture to formcaustic ammonium hydroxide. Long expo sure may result in destruction of tissues
LC50 value, inhalation (mice): 4200 ppm/hr.

Health Hazard

Vapors cause irritation of eyes and respiratory tract. Liquid will burn skin and eyes. Poisonous; may be fatal if inhaled. Contact may cause burns to skin and eyes. Contact with liquid may cause frostbite.

Fire Hazard

Mixing of ammonia with several chemicals can cause severe fire hazards and/or explosions. Ammonia in container may explode in heat of fire. Incompatible with many materials including silver and gold salts, halogens, alkali metals, nitrogen trichloride, potassium chlorate, chromyl chloride, oxygen halides, acid vapors, azides, ethylene oxide, picric acid and many other chemicals. Mixing with other chemicals and water. Hazardous polymerization may not occur.

Flammability and Explosibility

Ammonia vapor is slightly flammable (NFPA rating = 1) and ignites only with difficulty. Ammonia forms explosive mixtures with air in the range 16 to 25%. Water, carbon dioxide, or dry chemical extinguishers should be used for ammonia fires.

Agricultural Uses

Anhydrous ammonia is an ammonium fertilizer made by the Haber-Bosch process, by reacting hydrogen with nitrogen in the ratio of 3: 1 at high temperatures (450 to 500'C) and pressure (about 500 atm) in the presence of an iron catalyst promoted by potassium and alumina. The nitrogen derived from air and the hydrogen obtained from (a) synthesis gas, (b) steam reforming of naptha, coal or coke (c) lignite, or (d) electrolysis of water, are purified by standard procedures before use. The anhydrous ammonia thus produced can be directly used as a fertilizer. It can also be converted to ammonium salts which are important fertilizers, by reacting ammonia with nitric, sulphuric and phosphoric acids. Anhydrous ammonia is also reacted with carbon dioxide to get urea which is another important source of nitrogen.
Anhydrous ammonia is an important fluid fertilizer and is the cheapest nitrogen source, having the highest nitrogen content (about 82 %) among nitrogenous fertilizers. However, because of safety and environmental considerations, many dealers and users are now switching over to other sources of nitrogen.
Anhydrous liquid ammonia can cause dehydration of tissue and severe damage to the skin, lungs and eyes by its freezing and caustic action. Because of the low vapor pressure (6 bar at lO℃, 9 bar at 20℃ and 12 bar at 3O℃), anhydrous ammonia must be stored and transported in pressure vessels.
Due to the volatile nature of anhydrous ammonia it has to be injected with an applicator 15 to 30 cm below the soil surface to be effective and to reduce ammonia loss. Ammonia loss depends on the soil type, its moisture content, and the depth to which the applicator is injected.
Ammonia applicators range in size from small 5-row rigs to large rigs that have a swath width of upto 20 m (65 feet) and are pulled by high-powered tractors. Anhydrous ammonia is usually metered by a variable orifice-type meter or by a piston pump.
Physical properties of anhydrous ammonia are somewhat similar to other liquids under pressure like butane or propane gas. Because of the difficulties in handling anhydrous ammonia, water solutions of ammonia, urea, ammonium phosphate or other soluble solid nitrogen materials are used widely. Anhydrous ammonia is also used in the preparation of protein feeds for cattle and sheep, and as a defoliant to hasten the shedding of cotton leaves to facilitate mechanical harvesting.

Agricultural Uses

Anhydrous ammonia is the basic building block of almost all nitrogen fertilizer materials. Most of the world's ammonia is produced synthetically by a direct reaction of the elements by the Haber-Bosch process. The process involves an exothermic and reversible reaction that proceeds with a concurrent decrease in volume.
There are certain conditions for the above reaction to proceed optimally. These are: (a) temperature of 500℃, (b) pressure of 270 to 350 atmospheres, (c) a catalyst containing finely divided iron with molybdenum or calcium as a promoter, finely divided osmium or uranium, fmely divided nickel over pumice stone or ferric oxide with traces of silica and potassium oxide, and (d) pure gases (as otherwise the catalyst gets poisoned).
Free ammonia is extremely toxic to micro-organisms, animals and higher plants. Ammonia produced as a part of normal metabolism is immediately converted into a less harmful substance like urea and is excreted in urine. Ammonia can readily penetrate cell membranes whereas the ammonium ion is impermeable. There is a close relationship between the pH and the concentration of the free ammonium (NH4+) ion. The capacity of soil to retain ammonia increases with increasing soil moisture and clay content.
Ammonia is the least expensive and most widely used nitrogen fertilizer. It is used in the manufacture of other fertilizers like urea, ammonium sulphate and ammonium chloride.
Ammonia is also used in the manufacture of nitric acid, hydrazine hydrate, urethane, acrylonitrile and sodium carbonate (Solvay process). In addition, ammonia is used as a refrigerant, in nitriding of steels, in the petroleum industry, in the manufacture of explosives and rocket fuel, as a yeast nutrient, etc.
Anhydrous ammonia, which has great affity for water, contains approximately 82% nitrogen. This is the highest nitrogen content that any nitrogen fertilizer can have. As anhydrous ammonia is a gas at atmospheric pressure, to avoid its loss to the atmosphere during application, ammonia is injected at least 7 to 20 cm below the soil.
The simplest nitrogen solution is aqua ammonia which contains 25 to 29% ammonia by weight. Since ammonia volatilizes above 10°C, aqua ammonia is injected into the soil to a depth of 5 to 10 cm.

Pharmaceutical Applications

Ammonia solution is typically not used undiluted in pharmaceutical applications. Generally, it is used as a buffering agent or to adjust the pH of solutions. Most commonly, ammonia solution (the concentrated form) is used to produce more dilute ammonia solutions.
Therapeutically, dilute ammonia solution is used as a reflex stimulant in ‘smelling salts’, as a rubefacient, and as a counterirritant to neutralize insect bites or stings.


Ingestion of strong solutions of ammonia is very harmful and causes severe pain in the mouth, throat, and gastrointestinal tract as well as severe local edema with cough, vomiting, and shock. Burns to the esophagus and stomach may result in perforation. Inhalation of the vapor causes sneezing, coughing, and, in high concentration, pulmonary edema. Asphyxia has been reported. The vapor is irritant to the eyes. Strong solutions are harmful when applied to the conjunctiva and mucous membranes. Topical application of even dilute ammonia solutions, used to treat insect bites, has caused burns, particularly when used with a subsequent dressing.
When used as an excipient, ammonia solution is generally present in a formulation in a highly diluted form.

Potential Exposure

Ammonia is used as a nitrogen source for many nitrogen-containing compounds. It is used in the production of ammonium sulfate and ammonium nitrate for fertilizers; and in the manufacture of nitric acid, soda; synthetic urea, synthetic fibers; dyes; and plastics. It is also utilized as a refrigerant and in the petroleum refining and chemical industries. It is used in the production of many drugs and pesticides. Other sources of occupational exposure include the silvering of mirrors, gluemaking, tanning of leather; and around nitriding furnaces. Ammonia is produced as a by-product in coal distillation and by the action of steam on calcium cyanamide, and from the decomposition of nitrogenous materials.

First aid

Move victim to fresh air. Call 911 or emergency medical service. Give artificial respiration if victim is not breathing. Do not use mouth-to-mouth method if victim ingested or inhaled the substance; give artificial respiration with the aid of a pocket mask equipped with a one-way valve or other proper respiratory medical device. Administer oxygen if breathing is difficult. Remove and isolate contaminated clothing and shoes. In case of contact with substance, immediately flush skin or eyes with running water for at least 20 minutes. For minor skin contact, avoid spreading material on unaffected skin. Keep victim warm and quiet. Effects of exposure (inhalation, ingestion or skin contact) to substance may be delayed. Ensure that medical personnel are aware of the material(s) involved and take precautions to protect themselves. Medical observation is recommended for 24 to 48 hours after breathing overexposure, as pulmonary edema may be delayed. As first aid for pulmonary edema, a doctor or authorized paramedic may consider administering a drug or other inhalation therapy.


All work with ammonia should be conducted in a fume hood to prevent exposure by inhalation, and splash goggles and impermeable gloves should be worn at all times to prevent eye and skin contact. Cylinders of ammonia should be stored in locations appropriate for compressed gas storage and separated from incompatible compounds such as acids, halogens, and oxidizers. Only steel valves and fittings should be used on ammonia containers; copper, silver, and zinc should not be permitted to come into contact with ammonia.


On exposure to the air, ammonia solution rapidly loses ammonia. Ammonia solution should be stored in a well-closed container, protected from the air, in a cool, dry place. The storage temperature should not exceed 208℃.


Shipped in tank cars, tank trucks, barges, and steel cylinders. Labeling and restrictions vary with concentration: NA1005 Ammonia, anhydrous, Hazard Class: 2.2; Labels: 2.2-Nonflammable compressed gas, Domestic (U.S.), Inhalation Hazard (Special Provision 13). UN1005 Ammonia, anhydrous, Hazard Class: 2.3; Labels: 2.3-Poison Gas, 8-Corrosive material International, Inhalation Hazard Zone D. UN2672 Ammonia solutions, relative density between 0.880 and 0.957 @ 15 C in water, with .10 % but NOT . 35 % ammonia, Hazard class: 8; Labels: 8-Corrosive material. UN2073 Ammonia solution, relative density less than 0.880 @ 15 C in water, with . 35% but NOT . 50% ammonia, Hazard Class: 2.2; Labels: 2.2-Nonflammable compressed gas. Note: Also used for Ammonium hydroxide, CAS1336-21-6, Record A:0110.

Purification Methods

Dry the liquid, and store it, with sodium in a steel cylinder, then distil and condense it by means of liquid air, the non-condensable gases being pumped off. In order to obtain liquid NH3 from a cylinder, turn the cylinder upside-down (i.e. with the valve at the bottom, use a metal stand to secure it in this position) and lead a plastic tube from the tap to a measuring cylinder placed in an efficient fume cupboard which is kept running. Turn the tap on and allow the ammonia to be released. At first, gas and liquid will splatter out (make sure that the plastic tube is secure), but soon the liquid will drip into the measuring cylinder. The high latent heat of evaporation will cool the ammonia so that the liquid will remain cool and not boil vigorously. If the ammonia is required dry, the necessary precautions should be taken, i.e. the gas is allowed to flow through tubes packed with coarse CaO pellets. AMMONIA (gas, liquid or aqueous solution) is very irritating and should not be inhaled in any quantity as it can lead to olfactory paralysis (temporary or permanent).


Violent reaction with strong oxidizers and acids. Shock-sensitive compounds may be formed with gold, halogens, mercury, mercury oxide, and silver oxide. Fire and explosions may be caused by trimethylammonium amide, 1-chloro-2,4-dinitrobenzene, o-chloronitrobenzene, platinum, trioxygen difluoride, selenium difluoride dioxide, boron halides, mercury, chlorine, iodine, bromine, hypochlorites, chlorine bleach, amides, organic anhydrides; isocyanates, vinyl acetate; alkylene oxides; epichlorohydrin, and aldehydes. Attacks some coatings, plastics, rubber, copper, brass, bronze, aluminum, steel, tin, zinc, and their alloys.


Ammonia solution reacts vigorously with sulfuric acid or other strong mineral acids and the reaction generates considerable heat; the mixture boils.

Waste Disposal

Dilute with water, neutralize with HCl and discharge to sewer. Recovery is an option to disposal which should be considered for paper manufacture, textile treating, fertilizer manufacture and chemical process wastes.

Regulatory Status

Included in the FDA Inactive Ingredients Database (oral suspensions, topical preparations). Included in nonparenteral medicines licensed in the UK. Included in the Canadian List of Acceptable Non-medicinal Ingredients.

Ammonia Preparation Products And Raw materials

Raw materials

Preparation Products

Ammonia Suppliers

Global( 165)Suppliers
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