Laughing gas found in space could mean life

Scientists at UC Riverside are suggesting something is missing from the typical roster of chemicals that astrobiologists use to search for life on planets around other stars—laughing gas.

Greenhouse gas 'bookkeeping' turned on its head

For the first time scientists have looked at the net balance of the three major greenhouse gases—carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide—for every region of Earth's landmasses. They found surprisingly, that human-induced ...

Reducing agriculture's greenhouse gas emissions

The overwhelming scientific consensus is that gases produced by human activity are affecting the global climate. But even if you don't believe the current warming of the global climate is caused by humans, it's only common ...

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Nitrous oxide

Nitrous oxide, commonly known as happy gas or laughing gas, is a chemical compound with the chemical formula N2O. At room temperature, it is a colorless non-flammable gas, with a pleasant, slightly sweet odor and taste. It is used in surgery and dentistry for its anesthetic and analgesic effects. It is known as "laughing gas" due to the euphoric effects of inhaling it, a property that has led to its recreational use as an inhalant drug. It is also used as an oxidizer in rocketry and in motor racing to increase the power output of engines. It is often created in bushfires[citation needed].

Nitrous oxide reacts with ozone and is the main naturally occurring regulator of stratospheric ozone. Nitrous oxide is also a major greenhouse gas. Considered over a 100 year period, it has 298 times more impact per unit weight than carbon dioxide.

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