When ammonia, #NH_3#, dissolves in water, hydrogen ions are translerred from the water to ammonia to form ammonium ions and hydroxide ions. Ths reaction can be seen below. Why is ammonia a base in this reaction?

#H_2O + NH_3 -> OH^- + NH_4^+#

1 Answer
Jul 11, 2016

Answer:

Because ammonia has acted as an electron pair donor.

Explanation:

In acting as an electron pair donor, the nitrogen has become quaternized, and has demonstrably increased hydroxide ion concentration. It has therefore acted as a base by several definitions.