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What is the relationship between the structure of acidic water and the quality of the environment?

A scientific breakthrough in determining the structure of acidic water - may improve the understanding of how acids act on the environment and how their prevalence in the blood affects human physiology

Photo: Ramón.
Photo: Ramon.

What is the structure of water when it contains a strong acid? This is one of the first questions asked with the birth of physical chemistry during the 19th century. This question turned out to be extremely complex and all attempts to answer it unequivocally have not succeeded so far.

The key to the answer to this question is found in determining the structure of water when the proton, which is the active ingredient in strong acids, is dissolved in it. Determining the structure of acidic water is of great importance since acids are one of the most common groups of substances in nature whose control and concentration are essential for maintaining the environment of the water bodies on Earth and for balancing the biochemical activity in the human body.

Prof. Ehud Pines from the chemistry department at Ben-Gurion University in the Negev proposed a new way to test the structure of water when it contains strong acids. In an article in the journal Science (Science), which is published these days on the Internet, reports on a breakthrough made by Professor Pines, together with a research group from the Max Born Institute in Berlin. The researchers were able to determine the structure of the acidic water. The measurements were mostly carried out in Berlin by using lasers in the infrared range, light that is absorbed by the water when it reacts with the proton and through these absorptions the fingerprint of the proton's vibrations in the water was found.

The research shows that the proton is between two water molecules that form a kind of trap, where the proton stays for relatively long periods of time, when it oscillates between the two water molecules until it migrates to a nearby water molecule in the process of proton transfer - a similar important process in animal physiology.

For research on the website of the journal Science

2 תגובות

  1. Acidic water happens in environmental pollution by chemicals. This is the context. For example, sulfuric acid, hydrochloric acid, and more
    Acids in the chemical industry. I guess my father as the writer of the article may not be able to answer. This is the context.

  2. The title is misleading.
    This is an important discovery in chemistry, there is a connection to medicine and chemistry in general
    But it has nothing to do with the environment.

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