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Nitric Oxide (NO) Gas Detectors

Nitric oxide (NO) is a non-flammable, toxic, oxidizing gas with a sweet, sharp odor. Nitric oxide may be released by the action of nitric acid on metals—such as in metal etching and pickling—and is a by-product of the combustion of substances in fossil fuel plants.

It can be produced by the oxidation of nitrogenous materials, and is used in the synthesis of nitric acid, as a decomposition agent in certain gaseous products, and in semiconductor manufacturing.

Nitric oxide is converted to nitrogen dioxide spontaneously in air, meaning some nitrogen dioxide is likely to be present when nitric oxide is detected.


Characteristics of Nitric Oxide

Nitric oxide (NO) is colorless, poisonous gas. Nitric oxide fumes may be encountered whenever nitric acid comes in contact with organic material such as wood, sawdust, or refuse. It can also result from heating nitric acid and when organic nitro compounds are burned, for example, dynamite. The action of nitric acid upon metals, as in metal etching and pickling, also releases this dangerous compound. In high-temperature welding (oxyacetylene or electric torch), the nitrogen and oxygen in the air combine to form oxides of nitrogen.

Nitric oxide is somewhat soluble in water and when inhaled will react to form nitric acid. This causes slight irritation to mucous membranes of the upper respiratory tract. Continued exposure to high concentrations of nitric oxide can cause pulmonary edema and death.

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Not explosive, but will accelerate burning
Extremely toxic
Mononitrogen monoxide, Nitrogen monoxide
Exposure limits:
PEL\TWA: 25 ppm
IDLH: 100 ppm / 30 min.
Metal etching, blasting, welding, diesel combustion

Effects of Various NO Levels

NO Level in PPM
Resulting Conditions on Humans
Minor irritation of the eyes and respiratory tract.
Low water solubility, therefore, only slight irritation of the mucous membranes is noted even though the TWA has been exceeded.
Irritation is more intense, coughing and burning of the throat is evident. Symptoms will clear if the victim is removed relatively quickly to a clean air environment.
May be fatal even after short exposures.
NOTE: Continued exposure to low concentrations of fumes, insufficient to cause pulmonary edema, are said to result in chronic irritation of the respiratory tract, headache, cough, loss of appetite, dyspepsia, corrosion of the teeth and gradual loss of strength. Source: Dangerous Properties of Industrial Materials (Sixth Edition) by N. Irving Sax

How to Detect Nitric Oxide

With the ability to accurately detect up to six gases, Industrial Scientific’s MX6 iBrid® portable multi-gas detector is the ideal gas detector for nitric oxide and nitrogen dioxide gas detection. The RadiusBZ1 Area Monitor is best for nitric oxide detection across a site.

Area Monitor

Radius BZ1

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Mullti-Gas Monitor

MX6 iBrid

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