There space several interpretations of what constitutes one acid:

The Arrhenius definition: by the 1884 meaning of Svante Arrhenius (Sweden), an acid is a material that can release a proton or hydrogen ion (H+).

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The Lewis definition: A Lewis acid is one that have the right to accept a pair of electron and type a coordinate covalent bond.

The Brønsted-Lowry definition: Brønsted argued that every acid-base reaction involve the transport of one H+ ion, or proton. Water reacts v itself, for example, by transporting an H+ ion from one molecule to another to form an H3O+ ion and also an OH- ion. Follow to this theory, an mountain is a "proton donor" and also a base is a "proton acceptor."

For now we will stick through the Brønsted-Lowry definition. And we will currently tie the ide of acids and also bases into equilibrium:

Let"s begin by looking at the Ionization the Water:

2H2O(l) H3O+(aq) + OH-(aq)

This reaction walk fit the Brønsted-Lowry meaning since one water molecule is acting as an mountain "donating" a proton and also the various other is acting together a basic "accepting" the proton:


If we now write this reaction into an equilibrium expression:


But remember among our rules regarding the creating of equilibrium expressions states that we do not encompass solvents (liquids) as their concentration stays pretty continuous during a reaction therefore the water portion of the equation is essentially equal come 1 and also thus "disappears".

The result equation is offered a special designation KW dubbed the ionization consistent of water:


The worth of this constant at 25oC is 1.0 x 10-14. Together you can see indigenous the very small value the KW, water is not an extremely dissociated at room temperature and our assumption that the concentration that water being continuous is a an excellent one.

For pure water, the values of <H3O+> and <OH-> are equal and thus their values are both 1.0 x 10-7. If over there is an same amount of acid and base current in any kind of solution, the equipment is dubbed "neutral" and the pH that the equipment is 7.

If the acid concentration is higher than the basic concentration, the equipment is acidic and also the pH will certainly be much less than 7. If the basic concentration is better than the mountain concentration, the solution is basic and the pH will certainly be higher than 7.

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The pH Scale:

The pH that a systems is identified as the negative log10

(NOTE: H+ and H3O+ room interchangeable ways to define the existence of protons in solution)

The pOH that a equipment is defined as the negative log10


= 10-pH and = 10-pOH

The pH the a neutral systems is therefore 7. (-log<1 x 10-7> = 7)

The sum of the pH and pOH must constantly equal 14. This is since the –log KW = -log(1 x 10-14) = 14.