Acid Base Chemistry

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Submitted By bobiscoolcat
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Background: Acids are substances that are characterized by their ability to donate protons (H+) to other substances in a solution. Acids can be strong or weak. Weak acids do not ionize completely and are found in everyday substances. Acidity is a measure of the amount of dissolved hydrogen ions in a solution. The greater the number of hydrogen ions in a solution, the more acidic the solution. Strong acids donate hydrogen ions in water, to a much greater extent than weak acids. Bases are substances that are characterized by their ability to accept protons or produce hydroxide ions (OH-) in an aqueous solution. As for acids, the difference in strength of bases directly relates to the degree in which hydroxide ions are formed by the base in water. Like strong acids, strong bases are also dangerous chemicals. Weak bases are found in many everyday items. When feeling the consistency of a base, it feels slippery because it degrades the fatty acids and oils in the skin on contact. However, due to the possibility that an acid or a base could be very dangerous to human tissue, never experiment with an acid or base by tasting or touching it. To determine if a substance is an acid or a base, a pH scale may be used. pH is a measure of the concentration of hydrogen ions in a substance. The equation for pH is: pH = -log [H+]. The logarithm for pH is based on a scale of 10. As pH is a negative logarithm, the pH of a substance increases as the concentration of hydrogen ions decreases. For example, a pH of 2 is 10^2 times, or 100 times, more acidic than a pH of 4. On the pH scale, a pH greater than 0 and less than 7 is acidic, a pH of 7.0 is neutral, and a pH greater than 7.0 is basic. In addition to the concentration of hydrogen ions, bases can be measured by the presence of ion called a hydroxide ion (OH-). For bases, the pH value increases as the amount of hydroxide ions in…...

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