a colorless or yellowish, fuming, suffocating, caustic, corrosive, water-soluble liquid, HNO3, having powerful oxidizing properties, usually obtained from ammonia or from Chile saltpeter: used chiefly in the manufacture of explosives and fertilizers and in organic synthesis.
Words nearby nitric acid
Origin of nitric acid
First recorded in 1785–95
Also called aqua fortis.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
British Dictionary definitions for nitric acid
a colourless or yellowish fuming corrosive liquid usually used in aqueous solution. It is an oxidizing agent and a strong monobasic acid: important in the manufacture of fertilizers, explosives, and many other chemicals. Formula: HNO 3Former name: aqua fortis
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Medical definitions for nitric acid
[ nī′trĭk ]
A transparent, colorless to yellowish, fuming corrosive liquid that is a highly reactive oxidizing agent.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Scientific definitions for nitric acid
A clear, colorless to yellow liquid that is very corrosive and can dissolve most metals. It is used to make fertilizers, explosives, dyes, and rocket fuels. Chemical formula: HNO3.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.