Ammonium hydrate, Ammonia aqueous
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Ammonium hydroxide, sometimes known as aqueous ammonia, has chemical formula NH4OH. It can also be denoted as NH3(aq). It is soluble in water and has a pungent odor. It appears a clear, colourless liquid. Upon dissolution in water, it gives an extremely basic solution. In 1M ammonia solution, 1.42% of the ammonia is converted to ammonium, giving a high pH of 11.63.
When ammonia is dissolved in water, the water molecules donate a proton to the NH3 molecule. This leads to the formation of an ammonium cation (whose chemical formula is NH4+) and a hydroxide ion (OH–). This can be represented by the following equilibrium reaction.
NH3 + H2O ⇌ NH4+ + OH–
A solution of ammonia in water with a concentration of 1M displays a 0.42% conversion of ammonia into ammonium cation.
A solid base can ionize fully in the presence of H+. This means that in the presence of H+, OH– will be completely ionized to form water and complementary salt from its counterpart. Let us take the example of a solid base of NaOH dissolved in water. In the presence of H+ ions (from water OH– and H+), NaOH is readily formed by H2O and NaOH since the positively charged sodium interacts with negatively charged OH– from water, while Na+ interacts with OH- from Na+OH–.
The product would be NH4+OH– + H2O in the case of ammonium hydroxide. Remember that the results of each reaction are the same as the reactants.
In the food production, ammonium hydroxide and other ammonia-containing substances are frequently utilized. Ammonium hydroxide is declared safe (or "generally recognized as safe" or GRAS) by Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules for use as a leavening agent, a pH control agent, and a surface-finishing agent in food with no restrictions other than current good manufacturing practice.
Ammonium hydroxide is one of the components of cleaning agents, and is included in many window cleaning formulas.
Waste Water Treatment
Ammonium hydroxide is commonly used to produce chloramine, which is a disinfectant. Chloramine is popular due to its ability to remain active in stagnant water pipes longer, reducing the risk of waterborne infections.