-available-
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I understand that H+ ions make compounds acidic and that OH- ions make compounds alkali .

but what if a compound does not have H+ ions or OH- ions? Would they just be neutral?

I thought calcium oxide was alkali but how could it be alkali without having OH- ions?
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niv1234
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I am not entirely sure but I think the OH- and H+ ions just make solutions alkaline or acidic. So if there were H+ ions in solution that solution would be acidic I am not sure if it is the same for compounds.
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earthworm
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CaO is a base not an alkali
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Jehaan
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Well a lot of aqueous solutions will either be acidic or alkaline. You are forgetting a vital factor: water. Water disassociates into OH- and H+ ions.
As the above poster has said CaO is a base not an alkali as alkalis are soluble bases
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earthworm
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An acid is a proton donor and a base a proton acceptor. Acording to bronstead lowrey.
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-available-
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(Original post by earthworm)
CaO is a base not an alkali
What's the difference? I thought base was just a substance that neutralises acids, isn't that the same as an alkali?
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MersennePrime
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(Original post by -available-)
What's the difference? I thought base was just a substance that neutralises acids, isn't that the same as an alkali?
No, an alkali is a type of base. Alkalis are soluble bases, yet you can also get insoluble bases, which are not alkalis.
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iamhasana
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(Original post by -available-)
What's the difference? I thought base was just a substance that neutralises acids, isn't that the same as an alkali?
Any Hydroxide or Oxide is a base (a substance that is used in a neutralisation reaction)

Example: In the limestone cycle:

Calcium Oxide (CaO) and Calcium hydroxide (Ca(OH)2) are both bases and can be used to neutralise acidic lakes etc.
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