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Topic: Nitric acid (liquid) - covalent or ionic substance?  (Read 18578 times)

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Offline justastudent

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Nitric acid (liquid) - covalent or ionic substance?
« on: March 03, 2009, 05:57:00 AM »
Hi all

I am a senior high school chemistry student in Australia. I want to do well in my exams so I can study chemistry at Uni. I wish to learn from this forum and I will also try and help out with your chemistry problems as well.

Just as I was reading on acids and bases, this question poped up.


Is liquid HNO3 Nitric acid a covalent substance or ionic substance?


I am confused because I learnt that pure HCl (gaseous) is a colavent substance whereas HCl (aqueous) is a solution containing H+ ions and Cl- ions.


Thank you for reading this post and I would appreciate any replies.

« Last Edit: March 03, 2009, 06:07:25 AM by justastudent »

Offline AWK

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Re: Nitric acid (liquid) - covalent or ionic substance?
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2009, 06:40:17 AM »
read Greenwood Chemistry of the elements (2nd edition) page 465
AWK

Offline justastudent

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Re: Nitric acid (liquid) - covalent or ionic substance?
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2009, 08:25:09 AM »
Thanks for replying.

Unfortunately I have never heard of that text before. I hope it's common in Australia. Meanwhile, I'll try and see if the local library carries it.

Offline Astrokel

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Re: Nitric acid (liquid) - covalent or ionic substance?
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2009, 10:47:00 AM »
I believe it behaves the same as HCl and is polar covalent when pure HNO3 is in liquid form.
No matters what results are waiting for us, it's nothing but the DESTINY!!!!!!!!!!!!

Offline AWK

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Re: Nitric acid (liquid) - covalent or ionic substance?
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2009, 11:02:08 AM »
I believe it behaves the same as HCl and is polar covalent when pure HNO3 is in liquid form.
Unfortunately, it is more complicated problem. In fact gaseous HNO3 (though very unstable) is a covalent compound. In liquid it protonates itself (the second molecule)
HNO3 + HNO3 = NO3- + H2NO3+
Initial autoprotolysis is followed by a rapid loss of water
H2NO3+ = H2O + NO2+
water is immediately protonized
HNO3 + H2O = H3O+ + NO3-
The neat reaction is:
3HNO3 = H3O+ + NO2+ + 2NO3-
AWK

Offline Astrokel

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Re: Nitric acid (liquid) - covalent or ionic substance?
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2009, 12:27:34 PM »
Great info AWK, thanks. Have a snack!

Hmm, so i supposed it behaves ionic in liquid form? ::)
No matters what results are waiting for us, it's nothing but the DESTINY!!!!!!!!!!!!

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