Nitrogen (N2) is the basis of all life and the total amount present on earth always remains the same. It is found in the air, water and soil and is an elementary component of humans, animals and plants. You can read why nitrogen can still be a problem in this blog post.
Ammonia (NH3) released into the air reacts with other pollutants, forming the basis for particulate matter. Impacts on health cannot be ruled out, especially cardiovascular problems and respiratory diseases. Particulate matter is becoming a serious problem, especially with pollutants from exhaust fumes in large cities. But even pure ammonia in the air has negative consequences for the health of humans, animals and entire ecosystems. Ammonia has both a corrosive effect on plants and leads to their overfertilisation (eutrophication) and thus to acidification. In agriculture, increased ammonia concentrations can negatively effect the health of livestock.
Axetris sensor technology is an established authority in the measurement of industrial emissions and the monitoring of greenhouse gases. With the growing awareness of climate change, the measurement of greenhouse gases in particular has become a mission for Axetris. The first LGD Compact was developed directly for the measurement of methane (CH4). The challenge was reliable detection of even the smallest concentrations in the lowest ppm range. This is particularly important because methane from leaks into the atmosphere quickly becomes highly diluted.
Thanks to the LGD Compact’s optical path length of 80 cm, high sensitivity was achieved with low-cost lasers from the telecommunications sector. This also offers great advantages when measuring ammonia. Ammonia’s odor threshold is already very low and should not permanently exceed 20 ppm on average.
Following the successful introduction of continuous detection for these two gases, development at Axetris is now focusing on the next greenhouse gases. The reduction of reactive nitrogen compounds such as nitrous oxide and nitrogen oxides shows great potential for protecting the climate.