Nitric acid, appears as a pale yellow to reddish brown liquid generating red-brown fumes and having a suffocating odor. Nitric Acid is used in the manufacture of inorganic and organic nitrates and nitro compounds for fertilizers, dye intermediates, explosives, and many different organic chemicals. Very toxic by inhalation. Corrosive to metals or tissue. Prolonged exposure to low concentrations or short-term exposure to high concentrations may result in adverse health effects.