Updated April 1, 2008 

BC Science 10 Videos

Copper and Nitric Acid

Movie Run Time: 2:18

Danger: Nitric acid is extremely dangerous - do not use without using proper safety precautions. This demonstration should be performed in a fumehood by qualified personnel only.

Even through the window of a fume hood, this video illustrates the chemical change involved when copper reacts with nitric acid. The reaction in this case is:

Cu(s) + 4HNO3(aq) ——> Cu(NO3)2(aq) + 2NO2(g) + 2H2O(l)

When the reaction is in progress, you can clearly see the nitrogen dioxide brown gas being produced.

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Further Information

Copper + Nitric Acid - a fantastic page with amazing pictures that clearly explains the copper + nitric acid reaction.

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