Hydroxide

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{acid, form, water}

The hydroxide ion is a diatomic anion with chemical formula OH. It is constituted of an oxygen and an hydrogen atom held together by a covalent bond, and carrying a negative electrical charge. It is a natural constituent of water. It acts as a base towards an acid, or as a ligand towards a metal, donating 1, 2 or 3 electron pairs to metal centers. The hydroxide ion is present in the hydroxides of group 1 and group 2 elements, in the solid state. Those hydroxides dissociate in aqueous solution, liberating solvated hydroxide ions. Sodium hydroxide is a multi-million ton per annum commodity chemical. An hydroxide group attached to a strongly electropositive center may itself dissociate, liberating an hydrogen ion, making the parent compound an acid.

In organic chemistry the hydroxide ion can act as a catalyst or as a nucleophilic reagent. An OH group, known as an hydroxyl group, is present in alcohols, phenols carboxylic acids and related organic compounds.

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