Standard Article

Nitrogen Fixation

  1. William E. Newton

Published Online: 15 APR 2003

DOI: 10.1002/047126363X.agr332

Encyclopedia of Agrochemicals

Encyclopedia of Agrochemicals

How to Cite

Newton, W. E. 2003. Nitrogen Fixation. Encyclopedia of Agrochemicals. .

Author Information

  1. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 APR 2003


Nitrogen fixation, also called dinitrogen fixation, is a pivotal process in the global cycling of nitrogen. Nitrogen fixation is involved with the atmosphere-to-terrestrial direction of the cycling. Nitrification and denitrification convert ammonia to nitrate and then, via nitrogen oxides, to dinitrogen, which is lost to the atmosphere. Leaching and erosion of soils result in the movement of fixed nitrogen between land and sea. The biological world stay just ahead of a nitrogen deficiency because the fixation rate slightly exceeds the denitrification rate.


  • nitrogen fixation;
  • dinitrgoen fixation;
  • nitrification;
  • denitrification;
  • Haber-Bosch process;
  • microorganisms;
  • nonaqueous systems;
  • aqueous systems