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Name: Kerry
Status: educator
Grade: N/A
Location: NJ
Country: N/A
Date: October 2006

Question:
In a neutralization reaction of NaOH and H2SO4, because there are 2 acidic Hydrogens do you multiply the number of moles by 2?



Replies:
Right, Kerry, presuming you neutralize all the way to pH=7 or maybe 9. You can see the "2" in the reaction formula:

H2SO4 + 2 NaOH --> Na2SO4 +2 H2O

Na2SO4 will by slightly basic, hence the pH 9.

If you stopped at pH=5, the reaction would be

H2SO4 + NaOH --> NaHSO4 + H2O

and the mole ratio would be 1.

NaHSO4 is the "bi-sulfate".

Somewhere around pH=6-8, the reaction of bisulfate to sulfate would be roughly half done, and if you stopped near that pH the mole ratio would appear to be a non-integer between 1 and 2.

Jim Swenson



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