Frequently Asked Questions about HNO2 (Nitrous Acid)
Is HNO2 an Acid or Base?
HNO2, nitrous acid, is an acid. It releases H+ (hydrogen-ion) in water. That means, HNO2 has the ability to donate hydrogen-ion. As acid is any compound that can release H+ in water or the one that can give away a proton, HNO2 is labeled as acid too.
Is HNO2 (Nitrous Acid) a Strong or Weak Acid?
HNO2 is a very weak acid. It is because it doesn’t dissociate completely in water. It is very unstable. It mostly exists only in aqueous solutions. Many may mix ‘nitric acid’ (HNO3) and ‘nitrous acid’ (HNO2) because of their similar name or formula. But HNO2 is a weak acid and HNO3 is the strong one.
What is HNO2 commonly used for?
HNO2, also known as nitrous acid, is used with other substances to treat cyanide poisoning. Acute cyanide exposure that causes death within seconds is rare. Most of the cyanide exposure is unintentional. That can become acute when left untreated. HNO2 is also an ingredient in making diazonium salts, which are used for dyeing fabric.
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