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Air is a mixture of various gases.

Air Composition - Teachoo.png

How to Separate Different Gases from Air?


We know that Air is a mixture of different gases like Nitrogen, Oxygen, Carbon Dioxide etc.

They are separated by using Fractional Distillation


We use Fractional Distillation because difference in Boiling Point of the gases are below 25° C


Element Boiling Point (of Liquefied Gas)  
Nitrogen -196 °C Lowest Boiling Point
Argon -186 °C  
Oxygen -183 °C Highest Boiling Point


Steps to separate Air into component gases:

  • Air is compressed and cooled to Liquid
    This is done by increasing pressure and decreasing temperature

  • Liquid Carbon Dioxide flows out as dry ice

  • Remaining Liquid Air is Warmed up
    Heat is applied slowly by using fractional distillation column

  • Different Gases get separated at different Heights
    This is because of Difference in boiling points of different gases

  • Nitrogen and Argon Move to the top
    remains at the bottom , it is cooled as liquid Oxygen



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CA Maninder Singh is a Chartered Accountant for the past 12 years and a teacher from the past 16 years. He teaches Science, Accounts and English at Teachoo