# How can nitrogen achieve a +V oxidation state?

You mean how can nitrogen achieve a $+ V$ oxidation state.
Consider the nitrate ion, $N {O}_{3}^{-}$. Here, nitrogen has a formal $+ V$ oxidation state (i.e. 3xx-2+N_("ON")=-1). Nitrogen also bears this oxidation state in the NEUTRAL GAS ${N}_{2} {O}_{5}$. Our ideas of oxidation state are formalisms. They may be useful in some circumstances for pedagogy or calculation, but they have no real physical basis.