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### pH Value

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Date: 09/05/2001 at 02:24:28
From: Urvashi
Subject: pH value

Hi!

I would like to know the pH value of 0.1 N Sulphuric acid.

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Date: 09/05/2001 at 15:59:48
From: Doctor Achilles
Subject: Re: pH value

Hi Urvashi,

Thanks for writing to Dr. Math.

Normally pH calculations can be very tedious.  pH is related to the
concentration of protons in the following way:

pH = -log[H+]

Where the log is base ten and [H+] is the concentration of H+ ions in
moles/liter (or M).

With sulfuric acid, this gets especially complicated, because the
formula is H2SO4, so there are two protons that can dissociate, and
you have to find the sum total of protons that dissociate.

Fortunately, chemists have created Normality. Normality is similar to
Molarity (moles/liter). There are two differences:

1) Molarity can measure the anything, Normality can only be applied
to acids or bases.

2) The Molarity of a solution of H2SO4 or of anything else, is just
the concentration of starting material in moles/liter.
However, Normality is the concentration of H+ ions (for acids) or
of OH- ions (for bases) that you get out of the solution.

In other words, Normality normalizes for the fact that some acids and
bases dissociate more than others, so the pH of a 1N solution of any
acid is the same as a 1N solution of any other acid. A 1N solution of
acid, by definition, has 1 mole/liter of H+ ions, and a 1N solution of
base, by definition, has 1 mole/liter of OH- ions. In short, Normality
measures the concentration of H+ ions or the concentration of OH- ions
directly.

From here, you should be able to figure out the pH of a 0.1N solution
of acid. Hope this helps. If you have other questions, or you'd like

- Doctor Achilles, The Math Forum
http://mathforum.org/dr.math/
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Associated Topics:
High School Physics/Chemistry

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