Definition - What does Acidity mean?

Acidity is the characteristic of any substance that is acidic, which can turn blue litmus paper red. The acidity of a solution determines its ability to form a reaction with various metals and bases and to produce salts. The most common corrosives can be either strong bases or strong acids. Some solids, liquids and gases as well as vapor may have strong acidity that can lead to corrosion of substances as well as chemical burns.

Acidic solutions normally have pH below 7.0. The lower the pH, the more acidic a solution is, which also means higher hydrogen ion concentration.

Corrosionpedia explains Acidity

Acidic substances are corrosive and may have chemical properties that can prolong corrosiveness when in contact with living tissues. For instance, highly concentrated sulphuric acid is an extremely dangerous dehydration agent, as it dehydrates carbohydrates, releasing extra heat, which leads to thermal and chemical burns.

Other substances with high acidity include nitric acid, a strong agent for oxidation, as well as hydrofluoric acid, that can produce toxicity and tissue damage post-absorption.

High acidity can lead to corrosive reactions in industry, such as in water pipelines. Low-pH water passing through pipes can enhance the corrosion process since acidic water contains excess hydrogen ions. This leads to water hardness and scaling. However, softening the water can reverse the process and slow down or mitigate the corrosion process.

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