The amount of heat evolved when one gram equivalent of an acid is completely neutralised by one gram equivalent of a base in dilute solution is called heat of neutralisation. For example,
HNO3(aqueous) + NaOH(aqueous) NaNO3(aqueous) + H2O(l); DH = – 13.7 kcal
Heat of neutralisation of a strong acid and a strong base is 13.7 kcal, or 57 kJ. The constant value is due to the fact that heat of neutralisation of strong acid and strong base is merely the heat of formation of H2O from H+ of an acid and OH– of a base.
Weak acids (or weak base) are ionized to a small extent in solutions. Acetic acid, being a weak acid, is only partially ionized in solution.
CH3COOH (aq) CH3COO¯ (aq) + H+ (aq) DH° = + 2.2 kJ
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