9th Edition
Steven S. Zumdahl
ISBN: 9781133611097




9th Edition
Steven S. Zumdahl
ISBN: 9781133611097
Textbook Problem

Phosphate buffers are important in regulating the pH of intracellular fluids. If the concentration ratio of H2PO4/HPO42− in a sample of intracellular fluid is 1.1: 1, what is the pH of this sample of intracellular fluid?

H 2 PO 4 ( a q ) HPO 4 2 ( a q ) + H + ( a q ) K a = 6.2 × 10 8

Interpretation Introduction

Interpretation: The concentration ratio of H2PO4/HPO42 and the value of Ka is given for the reaction of phosphate buffer solution. The pH value is to be calculated.

Concept introduction: The pH value is the measure of H+ ions. The relation between pH and pKa is given by Henderson-Hasselbach equation. According to this equation,


To determine: The pH value of a sample of intracellular fluid.




The value of Ka for the given reaction is 6.2×108 .

The concentration ratio of H2PO4/HPO42 is,


The stated reaction is,



The formula of pKa is,



  • Ka is acid equilibrium constant.
  • pKa is the measure of acidic strength.

Substitute the value of Ka in the above equation.


The pH value of solution is 7.17_ .

The concentration ratio of H2PO4/HPO42 is,


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