Posts tagged ‘Hydronium’

June 10, 2015

Here’s one for Sheri49: Beware! There’s Hydronium in your Starbucks

by Janie Jones

Next time you order your Starbucks, be sure to ask for your brew to be Hydronium free.  If your barista laughs, you know they have a grasp of chemistry.  If they look nervous and embarrassed, then you’ll know they have absolutely no clue.

H3O+ is the Hydronium ion.  Adding an acid to water, by the Bronsted-Lowry definition of acid, adds extra H+ ions and generates H3O+, or Hydronium ions.  But, water is a polar molecule and exists in a state of constant flux between what we know as H2O and it’s parts, H+ and OH-.  So water is always freely and instantaneously changing between states and sometimes you actually have H3O+ even when no extra acid is present.

And that’s your chemistry lesson for the day.