From: Daniel Kuespert <0000057d3b6cd9b7-dmarc-request**At_Symbol_Here**LISTS.PRINCETON.EDU>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Nitric Acid Disposal
Date: Thu, 15 Jul 2021 10:13:46 -0400
Reply-To: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**Princeton.EDU>
Message-ID: 06E3E889-A2A0-44D2-9F3D-ED594DB27757**At_Symbol_Here**

Acetic acid or acetic anhydride can explode with nitric acid if not kept cold. Experiments demonstrate that mixtures containing more than 50% by weight of nitric acid in acetic anhydride may act as detonating explosives under certain conditions. An indication is given of the percentage mixtures of acetic anhydride-nitric acid which could be detonated using a priming charge and detonator. 
National Fire Protection Association; Fire Protection Guide to Hazardous Materials. 14TH Edition, Quincy, MA 2010. 491-124.

A possibly-useful source; try googling "nitric acetic acid reaction" and you'll get quite a few references. I always look askance at nitric acid with any organic, just as you do.

Just because it's in the literature does not mean it's safe. It just means that the experimenters in question were lucky. I once worked on an incident in which the investigators reproduced an old Soviet metallurgical procedure involving 20% nitric acid in ethanol ("nital"). The only problem was that above 5-10% nitric acid is not stable in ethanol, according to Bretherick's. There was quite a mess in the lab; fortunately, no explosion.

Dan Kuespert

Daniel Reid Kuespert, PhD, CSP
11101 Wood Elves Way
Columbia, MD 21044

On Jul 15, 2021, at 09:33, Patricia Leach <Patricia.Leach**At_Symbol_Here**TAMUC.EDU> wrote:

I had a question from one of the organic chemists here about how to store the waste from a nitration using nitric acid in a dichloromentane/acetic acid solvent. He says there are several examples of this nitration in the literature, but I am still wary. While the reaction is open to the atmosphere, I am worried about storing it until it can be disposed of. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Patricia Leach
Environmental Health and Safety Coordinator
Campus Operations and Safety
P: 903.468.3278
C: 316.644.8255
Mail: P.O. Box 3011, Commerce, TX 75429
--- For more information about the DCHAS-L e-mail list, contact the Divisional membership chair at membership**At_Symbol_Here** Follow us on Twitter **At_Symbol_Here**acsdchas

Previous post   |  Top of Page   |   Next post

The content of this page reflects the personal opinion(s) of the author(s) only, not the American Chemical Society, ILPI, Safety Emporium, or any other party. Use of any information on this page is at the reader's own risk. Unauthorized reproduction of these materials is prohibited. Send questions/comments about the archive to
The maintenance and hosting of the DCHAS-L archive is provided through the generous support of Safety Emporium.