A colourless crystalline solid, NH4NO3; r.d. 1.72; m.p. 169.6°C; b.p. 210°C. It is very soluble in water and soluble in ethanol. The crystals are rhombic when obtained below 32°C and monoclinic above 32°C. It may be readily prepared in the laboratory by the reaction of nitric acid with aqueous ammonia. Industrially, it is manufactured by the same reaction using ammonia gas. Vast quantities of ammonium nitrate are used as fertilizers (over 20 million tonnes per year) and it is also a component of some explosives.