[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
- To: Aquatic Plants Digest <Aquatic-Plants at actwin_com>
- Subject: Re: Nitrates
- From: Chuck H <grendel at usit_net>
- Date: Sun, 24 Aug 2003 23:41:24 -0400
What is your definition of the word "nitrate" as printed
on the instruction sheets of nitrate test kits?
Multiple choice version:
B) NO3-N (nitrate nitrogen)
what does NO3-N mean?
It would be useful to add the definitions of NO3 and NO3-N to
some FAQs, and explain somewhere that when people commonly
talk about nitrates, or refer to it as NO3, they're really talking about
NO3-N. It's a very confusing issue.
The shorthand for nitrate is NO3. That means it's made of one element of
nitrogen (N) and three elements of oxygen (O). If you want to get
technical with it, you can add a minus sign to the end (NO3-) to represent
the overall negative electrical charge nitrate has. When folks talk about
nitrate, NO3 is what they are referring to.
Nitrate-nitrogen (NO3-N) is basically just a way of saying "nitrogen that
comes from nitrate." In other words, it just refers to the nitrogen part
of the nitrate molecule. A value for ppm nitrate-nitrogen can be converted
to ppm nitrate by multiplying by 4.4. For example, my Hach test kit gives
results as nitrate-nitrogen. Earlier today, I tested one of my tanks and
the reading was 0.8ppm nitrate-nitrogen. That means that the tank
contained 3.5ppm nitrate (0.8 x 4.4 = 3.5). The familiar guideline of 5 to
10ppm nitrate is the equivalent of 1.14 to 2.27ppm nitrate-nitrogen.
Hope it helps.