What is Nitrate Radical?

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What is Nitrate Radical? Blog Image


Recently, a new study has found that parts of India and China are hotspots for the night-time production of nitrate radicals.

About Nitrate radicals:

  • Nitrate radical is an oxide of nitrogen that consists of three oxygen atoms bound to a nitrogen atom.
  • These radicals could increase the amount of unhealthy ozone and PM2.5 fine particulate matter in the atmosphere.
  • Nitrate radicals will oxidise gas pollutants such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
  • These VOCs will then generate ozone and secondary organic aerosol, both deteriorates air quality.
  • The Ozone is an air pollutant that affects human health and crop yield.
  • The synthesis of nitrate radicals rises at night in some regions of India, particularly in northern India.
  • Reducing the emissions of VOCs could reduce this night-time oxidation in India and China.


Q1) What is a free radical in chemistry?

In chemistry, a radical, also known as a free radical, is an atom, molecule, or ion that has at least one unpaired valence electron.

Source: Nitrate radicals’ are likely making air pollution worse in China, India