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Thread: What you would observe when dilute sulfuric acid is added to a solution of strontium nitrate?

  1. #1 What you would observe when dilute sulfuric acid is added to a solution of strontium nitrate? 
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    Jul 2005
    "Strontium sulfate has a lower solubility in water at 25 C than calcium sulfate. On the basis of this information, suggest what you would observe when dilute sulfuric acid is added to a solution of strontium nitrate with a concentration of 5 g per 100 g of water at 25 C. Write down a balanced chemical equation that is consistent with your observation."

    Can anyone please help me work through/understand this question? I'm stumped.

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  3. #2  
    Forum Freshman Spin-1/2-nuclei's Avatar
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    Aug 2011

    This sounds like a question from a problem set... So let me see if I can help you without answering the question for you.

    First things first, the solubility of salts in water depends on three major things.
    1. The identity of the metal & the solubility product Ksp
    2. common ion effect
    3. Temp

    The clues you have from the problem set:
    1. A chemical reaction is taking place - you cannot write balanced reaction equations for solutions (so step one, figure out what has reacted and what the products are! This is acid base chemistry, so draw out the compounds and assign all of your formal charges to determine where your source of electron density is and where your electron deficient atoms are)

    2. Temperature and solubility are important, these values are both given to you.
    3. The identity of the metal is also important - as eluded to in the first sentence of the problem set..

    extra hints..
    You've been told that you are using dilute sulfuric acid, and you've also been given the information you need to calculate the molarity of the strontium nitrate solution.

    You also know that you are adding sulfuric acid to a solution of strontium nitrate, ask yourself why would you do this?
    Moreover, the nitrate is a base and sulfuric acid is an acid. What does that tell you about the balanced equation..

    Remember when balancing a chemical equation you must pay special attention to not only conservation of matter (i.e. matter cannot be created or destroyed) but also conservation of energy, so make sure those positive and negative charges add up on both sides.. if you start out neutral end neutral if you start out +/- 1 end +/- 1, etc..
    hope this was helpful...

    if you are still stumped, you may also find this link useful - Solubility Products and Ion Products
    Best of luck

    Last edited by Spin-1/2-nuclei; August 16th, 2011 at 02:00 PM.
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