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Organic compound, powerful explosive and ingredient of most forms of dynamite. It is a colourless, oily, somewhat toxic liquid with a sweet, burning taste. Its safe use as a blasting explosive became possible after Alfred P. Nobel developed dynamite in the 1860s with an inert porous material (moderator) such as charcoal or diatomaceous earth. Nitroglycerin is also used in a mixture in rocket propellants. In medicine, it is used to dilate blood vessels, especially to ease angina pectoris.
Variants of NITROGLYCERIN
nitroglycerin or glyceryl trinitrate
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on nitroglycerin, visit Britannica.com.