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Acid/Base

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Temperature101

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A compound with which of the following atoms would be the STRONGEST base?

A. A weakly electronegative atom carrying a negative charge
B. A highly electronegative atom carrying a negative charge
C. A weakly electronegative atom carrying no charge
D. A highly electronegative atom carrying no charge

Why A is better answer than C?
 

Captain Sisko

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A compound with which of the following atoms would be the STRONGEST base?

A. A weakly electronegative atom carrying a negative charge
B. A highly electronegative atom carrying a negative charge
C. A weakly electronegative atom carrying no charge
D. A highly electronegative atom carrying no charge

Why A is better answer than C?

Use conjugate acid stability and examples to check your work. NH2- is more basic than NH3, right?
 

circulus vitios

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It's been like 3 years since I've taken gen chem...why isn't B the best answer?

edit: Never mind, I think I get it. We want an anion with the electrons held loosely so they would be more likely to act as a nucleophile.
 
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LoLCareerGoals

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Or think of it in terms of charge affinity. Strong base wants some protons.

Weakly el-neg particles do not like carrying neg charge.
Weakly neg with no charge is like: "Fine by me".
Weakly neg with neg charge: "Don't really like this neg charge, I could really use some protons".
Strongly el-neg with no charge: "I could really use some el-ons or shed some protons, to get neg."
Strongly el-neg with neg charge: "Sweet..."
 

Balantidiumcoli

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The answer is A

To simplify it, think of the conjugate acids of those solutions and pKa.

Let highly electronegative atom be Cl and let weakly electronegative atom be C

A. CH3- + H -> CH4 (Highest pKa)
B. Cl- + H -> HCl (Low pKa)
C. CH4 + H -> CH5+ (Impossible)
D. Cl + H (not very reactive) -> HCl (Low pKa)

The higher the pKa of the conjugate acid is the more equilibrium lies in that direction.

-Edit- Did not see the answers posted in the original post as white.
 
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