Nitric Acid Formula – Equation and Problem Solved with Example

Nitric acid is quite stronger and corrosive in nature and the other name for the acid is aqua fortis or the spirit if niter. The chemical formula for the chemical substance is HNO3 with a molecular weight of 63.01 g/mol. The structure for the chemical substance can be shown as below –

Nitric Acid Formula

The HNO3 molecule is planar in nature which is attached to the 3 oxygen atoms and one of them holds the proton as well. As you can see, two bonds are equivalent and resonant in character with a double bond.  It can be prepared by the reaction of the nitrogen oxide NO2 and water together as given below –

3 NO2 + H2O → 2 HNO3 + NO

As soon as HNO3 molecule is formed, it will get oxidized again by reacting with oxygen present in the air to produce nitrogen dioxide again where we started. If you wanted to prepare the HNO3 molecule for the commercial use then it can be done by oxidizing anhydrous ammonia with nitric oxide in the presence of a catalyst at high temperature conditions.

The acid is generally pungent in nature with acrid and suffocating odor. It is available in different concentrations ahead and its color would change accordingly like yellow, red, or transparent etc.  Further, nitric acid is a strong oxidizing agent and reacts violently with non-metallic compounds or metals too, to form metal oxides. It is used widely for production of fertilizers and an oxidizer in liquid-fueled rockets. In word conditions, it may result in skin burn issues or decompose tissues as well.


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