Updated: Apr 25
An overview of three theories used to describe acids and bases.
Arrhenius Acids - produce H+ ions in water H+(aq) Arrhenius Bases - produce OH– ions in water OH-(aq)
The theory explains the reaction between H+ and OH- to give water (neutralisation)
The definition is not applicable to:
a base that doesn’t contain OH– for example ammonia
species that are part of gaseous systems, such as hydrogen chloride
species that are insoluble.
THE definition for A Level Chemistry:
Brønsted acid - H+/proton donor Brønsted base - H+/proton acceptor
Much more general than the Arrhenius Theory
Species need not be soluble in water.
A Brønsted base doesn’t need to form OH-.
Lewis acids are electron pair acceptors Lewis bases are electron pair donors