The pure compound is colorless, but older samples tend to acquire a yellow cast due to decomposition into oxides of nitrogen and water. Most commercially available nitric acid has a concentration of 68% in water. When the solution contains more than 86% HNO3, it is referred to as fuming nitric acid. Depending on the amount of nitrogen dioxide present, fuming nitric acid is further characterized as white fuming nitric acid or red fuming nitric acid, at concentrations above 95%.
Nitric acid is the primary reagent used for nitration – the addition of a nitro group, typically to an organic molecule. While some resulting nitro compounds are shock- and thermally-sensitive explosives, a few are stable enough to be used in munitions and demolition, while others are still more stable and used as pigments in inks and dyes. Nitric acid is also commonly used as a strong oxidizing agent.
|Appearance & Physical State:||Colourless clear liquid|
|Water Solubility:||>100 g/100 mL (20 ºC)|
|Vapor Pressure:||8 mm Hg ( 20 °C)|
|Vapor Density:||1 (vs air)|
Safety Info Feedback
|hazard declaration:||H272; H290; H311 + H331; H314|
|hazard declaration add:||Corrosive to the respiratory tract.|
|waring notice:||P210; P220; P280; P303 + P361 + P353; P304 + P340 + P310; P305 + P351 + P338|
|RIDADR:||UN 3264 8/PG 3|
|Risk Statements:||R8; R35|