Copper nitrate

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Large green blue, deliquescent crystals. Copper nitrate is used to colorize metals. It gives a blackened, or antique, look to Copper and turns Zinc brown. Additionally it is used to brighten Aluminum and burnish Iron. Copper nitrate is used as a mordant and oxidizing agent in textile dyeing. It is used as a pigment for Glass, enamels, and ceramics. Because of its toxicity, it is also used as a Fungicide, and wood preservative.

Synonyms and Related Terms

copper (II) nitrate; cupric nitrate;


  • Toxic by ingestion and inhalation.
  • Skin contact causes irritation.
  • Strongly oxidizing - contact with organic materials may cause combustion or explosion.
  • ThermoFisher: SDS

Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Soluble in water, ethyl acetate, dioxane, ether, ethanol.
  • Deliquescent, orthorhombic crystals.
Composition Cu(NO3)2
CAS 3521-23-8
Melting Point 255-256 C
Density 2.32 g/ml
Molecular Weight mol. wt. = 187.56

Resources and Citations

  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Michael McCann, Artist Beware, Watson-Guptill Publications, New York City, 1979
  • The Merck Index, Martha Windholz (ed.), Merck Research Labs, Rahway NJ, 10th edition, 1983 Comment: entry 2710