Any metal is never extracted from its nitrate salt because nitrate salts are highly soluble in water, so flow away along with rainwater, or any other source. But why are the nitrate salts so hygroscopic in nature? Is there any relationship with hydrogen bonding? Or something else is the cause?

  • $\begingroup$ maybe hydration enthalpy? $\endgroup$ – Amritansh Singhal Dec 21 '16 at 13:17
  • $\begingroup$ Nitrate salts are no more hygroscopic than other salts. If anything, they are more soluble on the average, but that's another story. This has nothing to do with the reasons for not using them as a source of metals. $\endgroup$ – Ivan Neretin Mar 14 '17 at 12:47

Anions like nitrate forms strong hydrogen bond with water. Here water bridges the nitrate oxygen with hydrogen bonds giving it a very stable arrangement.

  • $\begingroup$ Are you sure that solvation is driven by enthalpy and not entropy? $\endgroup$ – Zhe Dec 22 '16 at 20:49

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