nitroglycerin

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nitroglycerin

(nī'trōglĭs`ərĭn), C3H5N3O9, colorless, oily, highly explosive liquid. It is the nitric acid triester of glycerolglycerol,
 glycerin,
 glycerine,
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.

Nitroglycerin

 

(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.

nitroglycerin

[¦nī·trə′glis·ə·rən]
(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.

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
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