aqua regia

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A mixture of concentrated nitric acid and concentrated hydrochloric acid in the ratio 1:3 respectively. It is a very powerful oxidizing mixture and will dissolve all metals (except silver, which forms an insoluble chloride) including such noble metals as gold and platinum, hence its name (‘royal water’). Nitrosyl chloride (NOCl) is believed to be one of the active constituents.

Subjects: Chemistry.

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