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Homework Help: Strength of ligands

  1. Nov 11, 2015 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    From what I've read, [Cu(H2O)6]2+ when reacts with concentrated hydrochloric acid, the chloro ligand will displace the aqua ligand and form [CuCl4]2-

    2. Relevant equations
    [Cu(H2O)6]2+ + 4Cl- <--> [CuCl4]2- + 6H2O
    ( <---> means reversible reaction, I don't know how to type it out, sorry)
    3. The attempt at a solution
    But chloro is a weaker ligand than aqua, how can the ligand substitution reaction happen?
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 11, 2015 #2
    I suspect the high concentration of the Cl- ions is sufficient to shift the equilibrium over to the right (Le Chatelier's principle) enough to cause a majority of the complex ions to undergo the ligand substitution.
  4. Nov 11, 2015 #3


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    Staff: Mentor

    Water concentration is (almost) always much higher.

    It is not just about the ligands, you are ignoring change of the geometry. Not that I know it is the answer here - I just see you are not taking it into account.
  5. Nov 11, 2015 #4
    I also like to ask, since no one comment about that, is water a ligand or aqua? I know that both refer to H2O, but if I want to mention a ligand, which one of them, aqua/aqua ligand/water/water ligand, is more appropriate?
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