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    aren't acids proton donors/ release H+ ions into a solution? how would an organic compound do that?
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    A carboxylic acid is an organic acid that contains one or more carboxyl groups.
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    Carboxylic acids have the functional group : R-COOH

    In solution this will dissociate into: R-COO- and H+
    (The H+ from the -OH on the carboxyl group is lost)
    It therefore corresponds with the definition you gave.
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    I THINK a carboyxlic acid is acidic because of the hydrogen in the -COOH group.

    That's if I remember my A-level chemistry :erm: somebody please do correct me if I'm wrong.
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    The word acid
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    The COOH group dissociates into COO- and H+. This is what occurs in amino acids, forming zwitterions (the H+ bonds with the NH3).
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    (Original post by applestrudle)
    aren't acids proton donors/ release H+ ions into a solution? how would an organic compound do that?
    There are several definitions of an acid, but one is indeed that it is a proton donor. A carboxylic acid can lose the H from the -COOH group to form a COO- group, where the negative charge is delocalised across both oxygens (so the anion is stable), and the C-O bonds are both the same length and strength (in between a single and double bond).
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    the electronegativity of the O in the COOH bit means a proton (H+) dissociates leaving COO- and a H+
    the pH of a solution is defined as -log10[H+] so that means that it is a weak acid.
 
 
 
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