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replacement of a hydrogen atom in organic compounds by a nitroso group, —N═O. Nitroso compounds, R—N═O, nitrosoamines, RRʹN—N═0, and oximes are formed as a result of nitrosation. For example;
RRʹCHNO2 → RRʹC(NO2)NO
Nitrosating agents, include nitrous acid, HNO2; its esters, RONO; nitrosyl chloride, NOCl; and nitrogen oxides. The active agent in nitrosation is the nitrosonium cation, NO+, which is formed, for example, upon action of strong acids on nitrosating agents.
Nitrosation is used in industry for the production of cyclohex-anone oxime (an intermediate in the production of caprolactam) and of α-diketones and α-amino acids.
Nitrosation was first accomplished by V. Meyer.