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Author Topic: Is ammonium hydroxide even basic?  (Read 711 times)

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CrimpJiggler

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Is ammonium hydroxide even basic?
« on: June 05, 2017, 06:05:18 AM »

I'm very confused about ammonium hydroxide. I read somewhere it doesn't even exist, I want to put that to the test by measuring the conductivity of a solution, but before I even got a chance to do that I am seeing reason to believe it doesn't. The only way I can think to make a pure solution of it is to hydrolyse urea (in a pot with an inverted lid filled with ice as a condenser). Loads of NH3 gas is being generated, but the aqueous solution is not changing pH, its been at around 6 from the start. Is this because the water is too hot to hold any NH3? I don't like generating this huge amount of NH3 and letting it out into the atmosphere, the plan was to trap it. When I let the solution cool, it solidifies, and forms white balls.
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Arkcon

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Re: Is ammonium hydroxide even basic?
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2017, 07:00:05 AM »

You can also start with household ammonia, and gently heat to dissolve it in household distilled water.  You can check the pH before and after.  You reference to NH4OH not existing is for the most part semantics, it exists in solution, an is useful in that form.
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Borek

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Re: Is ammonium hydroxide even basic?
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2017, 09:37:47 AM »

It is mostly a question about whether the solution really contains NH4OH molecules, or just dissolved ammonia (and water). While an interesting theoretical problem, it doesn't in any way change properties of the ammonia solutions.
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