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what is the basic reason that Al does reacts with nitric acid ?


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Resistance to oxidation is very complicated, completely experimental, and explanations are better sought after the observations are made...


Few aluminium alloys resist corrosion. Al-Cu and Al-Zn don't. Al-Mg, Al-MgSi and pure Al have better chances.


Cl- is known to botch the alumine layer, independently of the acid. Seawater corrodes most aluminium alloys that way, without acidity.


Nitric acid is mild to aluminium because it provides oxygen, hence reconstitutes the alumine layer, and is a weak acid. Pure nitric acid would not attack mild steel neither. But, well, if nitric did attack aluminium, we'd have found some convincing explanation as well...

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