Nitric Acid Sodium Nitrate
Sodium nitrate is a chemical compound with the formula NaNO3
Please note that the following instructions are very sensitive and should only be used by professionals. This process involves using a nitric acid substitute to dissolve gold, which can later be precipitated. Follow the steps below carefully:
a) Dissolve 80 grams (2.8 oz) of Nitric Acid Substitute in 50 milliliters (1.7 fl oz) of distilled water. Pour the Nitric Acid Substitute into a small glass mixing container and add all of the water at once. Swirl the mixture around to help it dissolve faster.
b) Measure 100 milliliters (3.4 fl oz) of JSP® hydrochloric acid in a graduated cylinder, and carefully transfer it to the Nitric Acid SUBSTITUTE solution, taking caution not to let it spill or splash. Swirl the contents of the container again to mix your chemical components. Ensure that you're working under a fume hood or in a well-ventilated open area, as your test materials will emit strong fumes when brought into contact with the acid. Always wear gloves and safety goggles when working with acids, as hydrochloric acid is highly corrosive and can cause serious burns if it comes into contact with your skin.
c) Fill a larger container with 50 milliliters (1.7 fl oz) of water. Pour in just enough water to cover the bottom of the second container. You'll be using this container to nest your mixing container and prevent spillage or overflow, so make sure that it is big enough to hold your test materials comfortably. Place your mixing container at the bottom of the larger container, ensuring that at least 1/4 inches (0.64 cm) of water is still exposed around all sides of the mixing container.
d) Add at least 32 grams (1.1 oz) of copper into the acid mixture. If possible, use laboratory-grade 99% pure copper pellets. Weigh the pellets on a precision scale in a lightweight container, making sure to weigh the container itself first and subtract its weight from the final reading. When you have a minimum of 32 grams (1.1 oz), dump the copper into your mixing container. Copper is needed to kick-start the oxidation reaction that will ultimately yield nitric acid.
e) Cover the mixing container with a separate container and wait about 1 hour. The third container will trap the nitrogen dioxide generated as the copper dissolves in the acid mixture. The gas will then flow out of the mixing container and bubble up through the water in the holding container, producing nitric acid. You could use a beaker that is one or two sizes up, or a mason jar or other drinking container made of glass. Rest a small, heavy object over the covering container to hold it down and keep it from bobbing as the escaping gas forces it upwards.