Acid-Base Reactions

Acid-Base Reactions

We can get many common examples of acid base reactions in our daily life. NaCl or table salt is one of them. Find out more about acid base reactions and their examples. Keep reading.
Acids and bases make a very important part of chemistry. An acid is a compound which gives H+ ions when dissolved in water whereas a base is a compound which gives OH- ions in water. When there is a reaction between the acid and base compounds, the end product is always neutral as the acid and base neutralize each others effect. So we can say that the chemical reaction between an acid and a base to give a neutralized product is known as an acid base reaction. That was a very general definition of this type of reaction. In this Buzzle article we will discuss this type of reaction in detail with the help of some examples.

Acid Base Reactions in Organic Chemistry

Before jumping to the reactions we need to understand what exactly is an acid and a base. So let's see the equations and nature of acids and bases when they are mixed in water.

Acids, when dissolved in water dissociate and release H+ ions. The acidity can be measured with the help of the compound's pH values. If the pH value is less than 7, then the compound is said to be acidic and as the value falls below 7 the more acidic the compound is considered. The following equation will help you to understand the dissociation of an acid in an aqueous solution.

HCl(g) + H2O → H(aq)+ + Cl(aq)-

Bases when dissolved in water will dissociate and release OH- ions. Like acids, bases can also be measured by their pH value. The compounds with a pH value above 7 are known as bases. The following equation will help you to know how the base gets dissociated in an aqueous solution.

NaOH(s) + H2O → Na(aq)+ + OH(aq)-

Acid-Base Reaction
By the above given acid and base equations we can understand their dissociation in water. Now let's move further with acid base reactions or neutralization reaction. Let's take the example of HCl and NaOH.

HCl(aq) + NaOH(aq) → NaCl(aq) + H2O(l)

You can understand this reaction in the following two steps.

HCl(aq) + NaOH(aq) → H(aq)+ + Cl(aq)- + Na(aq)+ + OH(aq)- → NaCl(aq) + H2O(l)

The above reaction shows how the dissociation of HCl and NaOH takes place. The end product found is H2O i.e. water molecule and NaCl which is a salt. So we can also say that the end product of an acid base reaction is a salt. The salts produced by this reactions are neutral and when they are dissolved in water they behave as electrolytes and conduct electricity. The acid and base reaction will depend upon the strength of the acid and base. Which means if the reaction is between a strong acid and weak base then its result will vary from the reaction between a strong acid and strong base or a weak acid and a weak base.

Acid-Base Reaction Examples

Now you must be clear about the concept of these reaction. Following are some of the examples which will help you to understand the process and reaction taking place between acid and base which will give the end product as a salt.

Example 1#

HBr (acid) + KOH (base)→ KBr (salt) + H2O

Example 2#

HCl (acid)+ NaHCO3 (base)→ NaCl (salt) + H2CO3

Example 3#

HC2H3O2 (acid) + NaOH (base)→ NaC2H3O2 (salt) + H2O

Example 4#

AgNO3 (base) + NOCl (acid) → AgCl (salt) + N2O4

Like any other reaction, balancing acid base reactions is also very important. Whenever you are given an acid base compound you should always end up with a salt and then try to balance it and find out the rest of the byproducts. These reactions are very important part of our daily life. Growth of trees, human body functions and many such reactions are examples of these type of reactions. This was just a basic outline about the reactions but when you will move further, you may get many problems to solve related to these reaction. For now we hope the information given in this article has helped you to understand the basic concept behind these reactions.