posted by Trevor on .
2NH3 <--> NH4+ + NH2-
In liquid ammonia the reaction represented above occurs. In the reaction, what does the NH4+ act as?
A catalyst? And acid & a base? the conjugate acid of NH3? The reducing agent? The oxidizing agent?
Not a catalyst. N has the same oxiation state on both sides; therefore, it can't be oxidized or reduced or an oxidizing or reducing agent. This reaction is like the ionization of water. Look at what it does.
H2O + H2O ==> H3O^+ + OH^-.
One molecule of H2O has acted as a base (to form the H3O^+ ion) and the other molecule of H2O has acted as an acid (donating that H^+ to the first molecule of H2O). Isn't that what NH3 has done?
NH3 + NH3 ==> NH4^+ + NH2^-
If #1 NH3 has accepted a proton, to become the NH4^+ ion, then #1 ammonia must be the _______ and NH4+ must be the conjugate _________.