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(nī'trōglĭs`ərĭn), C3H5N3O9, colorless, oily, highly explosive liquid. It is the nitric acid triester of glycerolglycerol,
or 1,2,3-propanetriol
, CH2OHCHOHCH2OH, colorless, odorless, sweet-tasting, syrupy liquid. Glycerol is a trihydric alcohol. It melts at 17.
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 and is more correctly called glycerol trinitrate. It is insoluble in water but soluble in ether, acetone, benzene, and chloroform. An unstable compound, nitroglycerin decomposes with explosive violence when heated or jarred. It is mixed with an absorbent material to form dynamitedynamite,
explosive made from nitroglycerin and an inert, porous filler such as wood pulp, sawdust, kieselguhr, or some other absorbent material. The proportions vary in different kinds of dynamite; often ammonium nitrate or sodium nitrate is added.
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 (which is not so sensitive to slight shocks) and is also used as a component of smokeless powder. Nitroglycerin was discovered (c.1847) by the Italian chemist Ascanio Sobrero and was first produced commercially by Alfred NobelNobel, Alfred Bernhard
, 1833–96, Swedish chemist and inventor. Educated in St. Petersburg, Russia, he traveled as a youth and returned to St. Petersburg in 1852 to assist his father in the development of torpedoes and mines.
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. It is used medicinally to provide temporary relief from the symptoms of angina pectorisangina pectoris
, condition characterized by chest pain that occurs when the muscles of the heart receive an insufficient supply of oxygen. This results when the arteries that supply the heart muscle with oxygenated blood are narrowed by arteriosclerosis.
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; the body converts it to nitric oxide, which causes narrowed blood vessels to relax.



(glyceryl trinitrate), ONO2CH2—CHO-NO2—CH2ONO2, the triester of glycerol with nitric acid; a powerful explosive.

Nitroglycerin is an oily, colorless liquid that crystallizes in two modifications: a labile form (melting point, 2.8°C) and a stable form (melting point, 13.5°C). Density, 1.591 g/cm3 (25°C). Nitroglycerin is virtually insoluble in water but readily soluble in acetone, ether, and benzene. It explodes upon even a slight impact. Heat of explosion, 6.3 megajoules per kg, or 1,500 kcal/kg; detonation rate, 7.7 km/sec; volume of gaseous explosion products, 713 liters per kg; flash point, ∼200°C.

Nitroglycerin is produced by nitration of glycerol with a nitrating mixture. It is used in significant quantities as a secondary explosive in the production of dynamites and various propellants.

Nitroglycerin produces dilation of the cardiac blood vessels; it is used in medical practice in the form of an ethanol solution (in drops) and in tablets to relieve attacks of angina pectoris.


(organic chemistry)
CH2NO3CHNO3CH2NO3 Highly unstable, explosive, flammable pale-yellow liquid; soluble in alcohol; freezes at 13°C and explodes at 260°C; used as an explosive, to make dynamite, and in medicine. Also spelled nitroglycerine.


, nitroglycerin
a pale yellow viscous explosive liquid substance made from glycerol and nitric and sulphuric acids and used in explosives and in medicine as a vasodilator. Formula: CH2NO3CHNO3CH2NO3
References in periodicals archive ?
Super secundo deponit that aboute a xij monethe agone vt modo recolit et tempus aliter perfecte non recordatur this deponent was personally presente in the house articulated together wth Wim Marchant his preconteste (24) beholdinge pappitt players wch was then in the said house wher and when he saw the articulated Wim Appowell beinge then and ther presente puttinge his hand vnder the Coates of [a] Certeine Woman standinge vppon a benche ther and beholdinge also the pappitts then and ther playinge but the name of the woman this depont knoweth not.
Super tertio deponit That at the tyme and place aforsaid he [CO--sawe the articulated Wim] this depont was personally presente when [sic] and when he sawe and hard the said Wim Powell request a minstrell that plaied one a tabrett to Comme in to the parlor of the said house to play ther who at his request did so And then the said Wim Appowell then and ther daunced wth diuers women that were then and ther presente wth hym.
Super quarto et quinto deponit That at the said tyme and in the same place [CO--after the Dawncinge was Donne this deponent] while the poppett playinge was in the hall or while some parte of it was the articulated Wim Powell was in the parlor of the said houss wth one hawkes his wief sittinge by the fiar ther et reddendo causam scientiae su[a]e Dicit that as by Chaunce this deponent did looke in to the parlor he saw them sittinge ther by the fier as aforsaid And that when diuers other persons were at the Doore mindinge to Comme in, he the said Wim Powell percevinge it, Conveyed the said woman out at a backe Doore of the said parlor.