Re: plane powered by nitrogen ... is that for real?

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Wed Oct 25 2000 - 15:39:38 MDT wrote:
> In a message dated 10/25/00 1:09:01 PM, writes:
> >I can hear the howls from the greens now - what is the exhaust? N2O?
> If a plane spewed out pure N20 or N02, it wouldn't be just the greens
> that howled - that would be incredibly, well, noxious ;-) But I
> thought N2 was the most stable form of nitrogen anyway ...

It might be stable, but its not, apparently, the lowest energy compound of
nitrogen, since the Manhattan Project scientists were concerned at the time of
the Alamagordo test that it would touch off the worldwide combustion of the
earths atmosphere... It just takes a really high temperature to make it combust,
which is why nukes don't do so, the energy output dissipates too quickly in open
air to maintain the continued reaction, so at some distance from ground zero,
the air no longer combusts. I imagine that the jet we are talking about must
have one hell of a compression system to get N and O to sustainably combust.

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