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Oxygen is prepared in the laboratory from salts such as potassium chlorate, barium peroxide, and sodium peroxide. The most important industrial methods for the preparation of oxygen are the electrolysis of water and the fractional distillation of liquid air. In the later method , air is liquefied and allowed to evaporate. The nitrogen in the liquid air is more volatile and boils off first , leaving the oxygen, which is stored or shipped either in liquid or gaseous form.