Net Ionic Equation for HNO3 + NaOH (Strong Base and Strong Acid)

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The reaction of Nitric acid and Sodium hydroxide represents a net ionic equation involving a strong acid and strong base. Strong acids and strong bases are considered strong electrolytes and will dissociate completely. This means that we will split them apart in the net ionic equation.

HNO3 + NaOH = NaNO3 + H2O is a neutralization reaction (also a double displacement reaction). The strong acid (HNO3) and strong base react to produce a salt (NaNO3) and water (H2O).


Video: HNO3 + NaOH (Net Ionic Equation)

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To balance net ionic equations we follow these general rules:

  1. Write the balanced molecular equation.
  2. Write the state (s, l, g, aq) for each substance.
  3. Split strong electrolytes into ions (the complete ionic equation).
  4. Cross out the spectator ions on both sides of complete ionic equation.
  5. Write the remaining substances as the net ionic equation.

Note: charges in a net ionic equation are conserved. This means that the overall charge (called the net charge) on the reactants side (left) of the equation must equal to the net charge on the products side (right).

Video: How to Balance Net Ionic Equations

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More Worked examples of Net Ionic Equations

  • AgNO3 + K2CrO4 (example of a double displacement net ionic)
  • Na2CO3 + CuSO4 (another double displacement reaction)
  • HNO3 + NaOH (Strong Base and Strong Acid)
  • NaOH + CH3COOH (Strong Base and Weak Acid)
  • Na2CO3 + AgNO3
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