The Chemical Properties of Acids and Bases

Some people think acidic, means corrosive. This is not entirely true. Yes, the more acidic a solution is, the more corrosive it can be. But, bases can be corrosive to. The acidity or basicity of a solution is determined by the pH scale, or also, the pOH scale. Both scales span from 0-14. On the pH scale, the left side (0-6ish) of the scale is acidic, while the left side(8-14) is basic. We will get more into the terms of basic and acidic later, but for now, lets look at strong and weak acids. Some people think acids are dangerous corrosive liquids that have the ability of melting the flesh from your hand. This is not true, weak acids are used almost every day, in stuff you eat and use. For example; Orange juice contains Citric acid which, with .1M (amount of moles dissolved in 1L of water), has a pH of about 3, which says its in the medium range of acids. There are a bunch of other acids that are used on a daily basis, you can find it in; soda pop, dyes, and vinegar (and many more). A strong acid, that you unknowningly use every day, is Hydrochloric acid. Hydrochloric acid, with 12M(12 moles of HCl/1L water) has a pH of about .5. Very acidic. Hydrochloric acid is found in your stomach, to dissolve your food. Strong acids dissociates completely in water. Did you know water is an acid? Actually, its and acid, and a base. One important piece of information would be that Acids are willing Hydrogen Donors. This means they will willingly give up an H atom (all acids MUST have an H atom; HCl, CH3COOH, HF). Bases willingly accept Hydrogen atoms. With this information, you can determine that Bases and Acids react to neutralize eachother. All bases have OH, so, we can also determine that this chemical equation is true: HCl + KOH -> Cl+K+H20. So a byproduct of acid+base reaction is water. This is just a small bit of information on acids and bases. There is much more out there, and much that we don’t know about acids and bases. Keep searching and futher your understanding.