When ammonium sulfate is heated with solution X, ammonia gas is given off. Is solution X HCl or NaOH?

1 Answer

Answer:

Aqueous ammonia generates a BASIC solution...........and thus #X# is likely #NaOH(aq)#...........

Explanation:

In solution, ammonia produces some quantity of #""^(-)OH# ions according to the equilibrium:

#NH_3(aq) + H_2O(l) rightleftharpoons NH_4^+ + ""^(-)OH# #(i)#

Since aqueous ammonia is itself in equilibrium with gaseous ammonia, i.e.

#NH_3(aq) rightleftharpoonsNH_3(g)uarr# #(ii)#

it follows that the addition of base to an ammoniacal solution will drive the first equilibrium to the LEFT, and thus the SECOND equilibrium to the right as written.......This is a simple manifestation of Le Chatelier's principle.

I do not advize you to do this, but when you take the lid off a bottle of conc. ammonia, or common cleaning preparations (of which ammonia is of course a typical component), the pungent smell of ammonia will bring tears to your eyes. It is a very powerful, penetrating smell.