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By the end of this section, you will be able to:
  • Explain the Lewis model of acid-base chemistry
  • Write equations for the formation of adducts and complex ions
  • Perform equilibrium calculations involving formation constants

In 1923, G. N. Lewis proposed a generalized definition of acid-base behavior in which acids and bases are identified by their ability to accept or to donate a pair of electrons and form a coordinate covalent bond.

A coordinate covalent bond    (or dative bond) occurs when one of the atoms in the bond provides both bonding electrons. For example, a coordinate covalent bond occurs when a water molecule combines with a hydrogen ion to form a hydronium ion. A coordinate covalent bond also results when an ammonia molecule combines with a hydrogen ion to form an ammonium ion. Both of these equations are shown here.

This figure shows two reactions represented with Lewis structures. The first shows an O atom bonded to two H atoms. The O atom has two lone pairs of electrons. There is a plus sign and then an H atom with a superscript positive sign followed by a right-facing arrow. The next Lewis structure is in brackets and shows an O atom bonded to three H atoms. There is one lone pair of electrons on the O atom. Outside of the brackets is a superscript positive sign. The second reaction shows an N atom bonded to three H atoms. The N atom has one lone pair of electrons. There is a plus sign and then an H superscript positive sign. After the H superscript positive sign is a right-facing arrow. The next Lewis structure is in brackets. It shows an N atom bonded to four H atoms. There is a superscript positive sign outside the brackets.

A Lewis acid    is any species (molecule or ion) that can accept a pair of electrons, and a Lewis base    is any species (molecule or ion) that can donate a pair of electrons.

A Lewis acid-base reaction occurs when a base donates a pair of electrons to an acid. A Lewis acid-base adduct    , a compound that contains a coordinate covalent bond between the Lewis acid and the Lewis base, is formed. The following equations illustrate the general application of the Lewis concept.

The boron atom in boron trifluoride, BF 3 , has only six electrons in its valence shell. Being short of the preferred octet, BF 3 is a very good Lewis acid and reacts with many Lewis bases; a fluoride ion is the Lewis base in this reaction, donating one of its lone pairs:

This figure illustrates a chemical reaction using structural formulas. On the left, an F atom is surrounded by four electron dot pairs and has a superscript negative symbol. This structure is labeled below as “Lewis base.” Following a plus sign is another structure which has a B atom at the center and three F atoms single bonded above, right, and below. Each F atom has three pairs of electron dots. This structure is labeled below as “Lewis acid.” Following a right pointing arrow is a structure in brackets that has a central B atom to which 4 F atoms are connected with single bonds above, below, to the left, and to the right. Each F atom in this structure has three pairs of electron dots. Outside the brackets is a superscript negative symbol. This structure is labeled below as “Acid-base adduct.”

In the following reaction, each of two ammonia molecules, Lewis bases, donates a pair of electrons to a silver ion, the Lewis acid:

This figure illustrates a chemical reaction using structural formulas. On the left side, a 2 preceeds an N atom which has H atoms single bonded above, to the left, and below. A single electron dot pair is on the right side of the N atom. This structure is labeled below as “Lewis base.” Following a plus sign is an A g atom which has a superscript plus symbol. Following a right pointing arrow is a structure in brackets that has a central A g atom to which N atoms are connected with single bonds to the left and to the right. Each of these N atoms has H atoms bonded above, below, and to the outside of the structure. Outside the brackets is a superscript plus symbol. This structure is labeled below as “Acid-base adduct.”

Nonmetal oxides act as Lewis acids and react with oxide ions, Lewis bases, to form oxyanions:

This figure illustrates a chemical reaction using structural formulas. On the left, an O atom is surrounded by four electron dot pairs and has a superscript 2 negative. This structure is labeled below as “Lewis base.” Following a plus sign is another structure which has an S atom at the center. O atoms are single bonded above and below. These O atoms have three electron dot pairs each. To the right of the S atom is a double bonded O atom which has two pairs of electron dots. This structure is labeled below as “Lewis acid.” Following a right pointing arrow is a structure in brackets that has a central S atom to which 4 O atoms are connected with single bonds above, below, to the left, and to the right. Each of the O atoms has three pairs of electron dots. Outside the brackets is a superscript 2 negative. This structure is labeled below as “Acid-base adduct.”

Many Lewis acid-base reactions are displacement reactions in which one Lewis base displaces another Lewis base from an acid-base adduct, or in which one Lewis acid displaces another Lewis acid:

This figure shows three chemical reactions in three rows using structural formulas. In the first row, to the left, in brackets is a structure that has a central A g atom to which N atoms are connected with single bonds to the left and to the right. Each of these N atoms has H atoms bonded above, below, and to the outside of the structure. Outside the brackets is a superscript plus symbol. This structure is labeled below as “Acid-base adduct.” Following a plus sign is a 2 and another structure in brackets that shows a C atom triple bonded to an N atom. The C atom has an unshared electron pair on its left side and the N atom has an unshared pair on its right side. Outside the brackets to the right is a superscript negative symbol. This structure is labeled below as “Base.” Following a right pointing arrow is a structure in brackets that has a central A g atom to which 4 FC atoms are connected with single bonds to the left and to the right. At each of the two ends, N atoms are triple bonded to the C atoms. The N atoms each have an unshared electron pair at the end of the structure. Outside the brackets is a superscript negative symbol. This structure is labeled below as “New adduct.” Following a plus sign is an N atom which has H atoms single bonded above, to the left, and below. A single electron dot pair is on the left side of the N atom. This structure is labeled below as “New base.” In the second row, on the left side in brackets is a structure with a central C atom. O atoms, each with three unshared electron pairs, are single bonded above and below and a third O atom, with two unshared electron pairs, is double bonded to the right. Outside the brackets is a superscript 2 negative. This structure is labeled below as “Acid-base adduct.” Following a plus sign is another structure which has an S atom at the center. O atoms are single bonded above and below. These O atoms have three electron dot pairs each. To the right of the S atom is a double bonded O atom which has two pairs of electron dots. This structure is labeled below as “Acid.” Following a right pointing arrow is a structure in brackets that has a central S atom to which 4 O atoms are connected with single bonds above, below, to the left, and to the right. Each of the O atoms has three pairs of electron dots. Outside the brackets is a superscript 2 negative. This structure is labeled below as “New adduct.”

The last displacement reaction shows how the reaction of a Brønsted-Lowry acid with a base fits into the Lewis concept. A Brønsted-Lowry acid such as HCl is an acid-base adduct according to the Lewis concept, and proton transfer occurs because a more stable acid-base adduct is formed. Thus, although the definitions of acids and bases in the two theories are quite different, the theories overlap considerably.

Many slightly soluble ionic solids dissolve when the concentration of the metal ion in solution is decreased through the formation of complex (polyatomic) ions in a Lewis acid-base reaction. For example, silver chloride dissolves in a solution of ammonia because the silver ion reacts with ammonia to form the complex ion     Ag ( NH 3 ) 2 + . The Lewis structure of the Ag ( NH 3 ) 2 + ion is:

A structure is shown in brackets. The structure has a central A g atom to which N atoms are single bonded to the left and right. Each of these atoms N atom has H atoms single bonded above, below, and to the outer end of the structure. Outside the brackets is a superscripted plus.

The equations for the dissolution of AgCl in a solution of NH 3 are:

AgCl ( s ) Ag + ( a q ) + Cl ( a q )
Ag + ( a q ) + 2 NH 3 ( a q ) Ag ( NH 3 ) 2 + ( a q )
Net: AgCl ( s ) + 2 NH 3 ( a q ) Ag ( NH 3 ) 2 + ( a q ) + Cl ( a q )

Aluminum hydroxide dissolves in a solution of sodium hydroxide or another strong base because of the formation of the complex ion Al ( OH ) 4 . The Lewis structure of the Al ( OH ) 4 ion is:

Questions & Answers

Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
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Renato
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Stoney Reply
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Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
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Adin
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Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
research.net
kanaga
sciencedirect big data base
Ernesto
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
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absolutely yes
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Abigail
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Anassong
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
NANO
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Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
s.
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
Tarell
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
Damian
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
Tarell
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
Virgil
is Bucky paper clear?
CYNTHIA
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
NANO
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Harper
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
s.
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SUYASH Reply
for screen printed electrodes ?
SUYASH
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
Ebrahim
or in general
Ebrahim
in general
s.
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
tahir
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Practice Key Terms 8

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Source:  OpenStax, Ut austin - principles of chemistry. OpenStax CNX. Mar 31, 2016 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11830/1.13
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