Physics Van 3-site Navigational Menu

Physics Van Navigational Menu

Q & A: Liquid Nitrogen ’Clean-Up’

Learn more physics!

Most recent answer: 06/30/2011
Q:
Is there a need to clean the floor area where Liquid Nitrogen spills or do we just let it evaporate? If it needs to be clean, how?
- Gracie
Georgia
A:
Gracie -

Nitrogen is a normal part of the air that you breathe. Except for the fact that it is extremely cold, liquid nitrogen is totally non-toxic. When it pours onto the floor, it will evaporate completely into the air, leaving nothing behind. In fact, you may even find that the floor is cleaner after pouring the nitrogen than before because of the way that the liquid nitrogen traps dirt as it rolls across the floor.

-Tamara

(published on 10/22/2007)

Follow-Up #1: liquid nitrogen on nose?

Q:
How do you clean liquid nitrogen off from your nose?
- Anonymous
A:
I assume you're joking. Still, it's an opportunity to warn people to be careful about liquid nitrogen. It can cause freeze-burns. That might not be a big deal for some small spot on your body, but the nose is very close to the eyes. You really don't want to be splashing liquid nitrogen around your face.

Mike W.

(published on 06/30/2011)

Follow-up on this answer.