Series : Use cases of Liquid Nitrogen (part 1)


The science of chemistry.
This topic is so much interesting to me as it brings to my knowledge the wonderful innovations of the study of science once again.
Am I a lover of science? 😂. Just call me a lover of brilliant discoveries.


Liquid Nitrogen is liquid at the lowest temperature of a boiling point of about -196oC at atmospheric pressure, the state at which the gases of air is compressed and cooled down to a very cool temperature, cool enough for molecules to create very weak bonds, therefore, forming droplets of liquid known as the liquid nitrogen, also playfully known as the magic disappearing water.
Most of you all already know about this, or even know more than the little research I carried out.
However, the fascinating view of this post is knowing all the beautiful substances that can be derived from the combination of this magic water with other substances. The likes of pharmaceuticals, detergent, perfumes, plastics, toothpaste, explosives etc.

Let's take look at what can be derived from combining LN2 with a substance that has very energized molecules, let a say thick rubber stick (we do know rubber is elastic, can be stretched out and still return to its original form). The high energy in the molecules makes them active and I'll say caused a lot of activities going on, making the substance elastic.
The point of putting the rubber stick into a bottle of liquid nitrogen creates a process of slowing down the activities of the molecules present in the substance and therefore reducing their energy causing very weak bonds.
frozen rubbersource

Do you want to guess the outcome? am sure you already know, if not, here the state of the elastic rubber stick changes to a non-elastic state causing the rubber to become frozen to a point that if whacked on any hard surface will shatter to hundreds of fragment. just like the case of water turning to ice if introduced to liquid nitrogen, only in this case do the water's molecules only rearrange and expand to a frozen point

Conclusively, the focus of this piece is to revisit the beauty of chemistry's principle of substances creating new substances and how it has been a blessing to our evolving civilization.

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There are many fun things you can do with LN2. I often use it to flash freeze tissues and proteins and even cryopreserve cells for decades. But the most interesting game I like to play it drop it on a surface and watch it carry all the dust particles to the sides and kind of cleaning the surface for me 😁. And sometimes Or, I just make slow-mo videos with it, sometimes.

Below is a slow-mo video of me dropping a vial to flash freeze in the LN2 -