Chemical | Nitric Acid

Nitric Acid is a highly corrosive inorganic acid. It plays an important role in diverse industrial processes. As an alternative to titration Anton Paar has developed a method to easily determine the concentration of nitric acid via refractive index measurements using the Abbemat refractometer.

Nitric acid (acc. to IUPAC1: hydrogen nitrate) is an essential basic component of diverse manufactured products. Important application areas are:

• Production of fertilizers and explosives (up to 85 % of nitric acid world production)

• Production of special organic compounds such as nylon precursors

• Artificial aging of pine and maple trees (low concentrations are used)

• Pickling of stainless steel or cleaning of silicon wafers in electronics

• Etching of metals to reveal their microstructure (e.g. ISO 14104)

• Cleaning of food and dairy equipment (combined with phosphoric acid).

• Indication of alkaloids like lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) in spot tests

• Verification of the purity of gold

The highly corrosive properties of nitric acid require strict safety precautions, especially when working with larger quantities.

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