Magnesium-nitride is often described in yellow. However, we have never seen a yellow residue from the first heat. Students notice the lack of yellow products often and silently skip or ask about the second heat.
Is magnesium nitride water-soluble?
Magnesium-nitrate, a water-soluble source for crystalline magnesium, is compatible with both nitrates (acidic) and low pH compounds. Magnesium compounds containing nitrates are generally water-soluble. Oxidants are also available for nitrate compounds.
Application of Magnesium Nitride
Magnesium oxide can be used as catalyst to synthesise cubic boron trioxide. This was also used in the successful first synthesis.
Robert Wentorf, a 1957 chemist, attempted to convert hexagonalboron nutride into cubic boron nutride. He tried various methods to convert the boron nitride into cubic boron tiride. He tried all possible catalysts (such those used in diamond-synthesis), but nothing worked.
He added magnesium to hexagonal-boron nitride  later out of curiosity and desperateness. It was discovered that the magnesium contained tiny dark lumps that could scratch polished boron nitride, which was the only known substance at the time.
Wentorf noticed ammonia-like odors in magnesium nitride and moist air. He concluded that magnesium nitride was formed by reaction of magnesium nitride and magnesium nitride. This magnesium nitride was a catalyst for the formation of cubic boron nutride.
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