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What is Buffer solution?

by Team Goseeko

A buffer is an aqueous solution that consists of a mixture of a weak acid and its salt (acid buffer) or a weak base with its salt (basic buffer).

When small amount of acid or base is present in solutions , and the results show a slight change in pH,

Additionaly the acid and base are used to prevent any change in a solution pH.

Buffers solutions are generally characterized by pH range through which the pH is maintained a constant by their respective buffer capacity and therefore pH changes significantly due to the the amount of strong acid or base that can be absorbed .

Though the pH range of a Buffer solution strongly depends on the chemical properties of the weak acid and weak base used to prepare the buffer (i.e., on KK),

Its buffer capacity depends solely on the concentrations of the species in the buffered solution. The more concentrated the buffer solution, the greater its buffer capacity.

Properties of Buffer solutions

The buffer solutions usually consist of a weak acid and its conjugate base. When H +  is present in a buffer, the protons (H + ) accepts the acid’s conjugate base and absorbs the (H + ) before the solution pH lowers significantly. 

Similarly, when OH – ions adds on to the weak acid donates a proton (H + ) to its conjugate base. Therefore resists any increase in pH before shifting to a new equilibrium point.

In biological systems, buffers prevent the fluctuation of pH via processes that produce acid or base by-products to maintain an optimal pH.

Each of the conjugate acid-base pairs have a specific pH range by which it works effectively as a buffer.

The region of Buffering is about 1pH unit on both the sides of the pK a  of the conjugate acid. 

The midpoint of the buffering region occurs when one half of the acid reacts to dissociation and the proton donor concentration(acid) is equal to the proton acceptor (base).

In chemistry, pH is a measure of the hydrogen ion (H + ) concentration in a solution. The calculations of the pH buffer solutions results from the concentrations of the various components of the reaction.

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