saltpeter$71833$ - traducción al español
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saltpeter$71833$ - traducción al español

Soda niter; Chile saltpeter; Soda nitre; Cubic Nitre; Nitratite; Chilean saltpeter; Nitrate of Chile; Sodanitre
  • Advertisement for Chilean saltpeter for use as fertilizer in Spain

n. salitre
sodium nitrate         
  • Advertisement for sodium nitrate fertilizer from Chile on a wall of a village in the Algarve area of Portugal
  • Mines of Chile, green is sodium nitrate area
NaNO3; Sodium Nitrate; Chili saltpetre; Chile Saltpetre; Nano3; E251; Nitrate trade; Nitrate of soda; NNaO3; Peru saltpetre; Peru saltpeter; Cubic nitre; Cubic niter
(n.) = nitrato de sodio, nitrato sódico
Ex: By adding sodium nitrite to packaged meats they can seem visually fresh even if they"ve been on the shelves for months.
potassium nitrate         
  • A demonstration of the oxidation of a piece of [[charcoal]] in molten potassium nitrate
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Salt peter; Saltpetre; Chilean saltpetre; KNO3; Potasium Nitrate; Nitrate of potash; Potassium Nitrate; E252; Salt petre; Salt Peter; Pottasium nitrate; Kno3; Vesta powder; Saltpeteir; Saltpeter; Sal petrae; Nitre bed; Nitre beds
(n.) = nitrato de potasio
Ex: Saltpeter is potassium nitrate, which was indeed used for curing meat.


·noun A mineral occurring in transparent crystals, usually of a white, sometimes of a reddish gray, or lemon-yellow, color; native sodium nitrate. It is used in making nitric acid and for manure. Called also soda niter.



Nitratine or nitratite, also known as cubic niter (UK: nitre), soda niter or Chile saltpeter (UK: Chile saltpetre), is a mineral, the naturally occurring form of sodium nitrate, NaNO3. Chemically it is the sodium analogue of saltpeter. Nitratine crystallizes in the trigonal system, but rarely occurs as well formed crystals. It is isostructural with calcite. It is relatively soft and light with a Mohs hardness of 1.5 to 2 and a specific gravity of 2.24 to 2.29. Its refractive indices are nω=1.587 and nε=1.336.

The typical form is as coatings of white, grey to yellowish brown masses. The rare crystals when found typically have the scalenohedral form of the calcite structure. It is found only as an efflorescence in very dry environments. It is very soluble in water such that it is deliquescent and will absorb water out of the air and turn into a puddle of sodium nitrate solution when exposed to humid air.

There are nitratine deposits located in arid regions across the world such as in Chile, Mexico, Egypt, Peru, and South Africa. Chile is the only country to sell their deposits commercially as fertilizer. The salt bed that is mined contains more minerals than just nitratine often containing sulfurous minerals as well as Iodine. Around 600,000 tons of nitratine are mined in Chile each year with other products such as Iodine and sodium sulfate mined as well.

Nitratine happens to be isostructural to calcite, CaCO3 a widespread naturally occurring mineral although nitratine dissolution and crystallization occur much faster than the same processes for calcite. The structural similarity makes nitratine a very useful mineral for laboratory experiments concerning pressure dissolution and other experiments such as serving as a proxy for the deformation and formation of calcite.

The Saltpeter War (1480-1510) and the War of the Pacific (1879-1884) were fought over the control of saltpeter deposits.