Is there a word for adding base to a solution?

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Dears.

You can say "the solutions were acidified by addition of 10 µL formic acid", but what word do you use when adding 10 µL of sodium hydroxide solution?

Thanks,
Jörg
to alkalify

your solution was alkalified with NaOH
I'm with dblux_, use alkalify or perhaps alkalize (medical). Was mortified to see in Merriam-Webster the word basify, though.
MattM
Basify was the word I had always heard before. It does sound odd but so does basisity, which used to be used instead of alkalinity.

Sort of like what is the opposite of slippery to describe a road surface. The opposite would be to have traction but tractiony doesn't sound right either :)
The past is there to guide us into the future, not to dwell in.
@ James Ball,

Maybe I'm just prejudiced against "basify". Meriam-Webster wouldn't mess with us, would they?

:P
MattM
Just to take a step back from semantics.

For a written scientific method you shouldn't be using those terms

For example - You can acidify something but sometimes it needs to be taken to a particular pH - the same with adding base.

Would it not be far better just to simply say add the appropriate stated amount ( whatever that amount is) of acid/base to achieve a particular pH in keeping with the method?

"You can't verbify a noun" :lol:
Regards

Ralph
GOM wrote:
Just to take a step back from semantics.

You can acidify something but sometimes it needs to be taken to a particular pH - the same with adding base.

Would it not be far better just to simply say add an appropriate stated amount ( whatever that amount is) of acid/base to achieve a particular pH in keeping with a scientific method?

"You can't verbify a noun" :lol:


But you can acidify to pH let's say 4 or alkalify to pH 9. You can neutralize acid or alkali solution as well.
Language is rich and we don't have to limit ourselves to one verb "add".
You can also acidify to pH 9 from 11

I was simply trying to point out that it is a false argument. Nobody loves the richness of language more than me but for a written scientific method we do need to keep to something like add or whatever verb you want to use :-)
Regards

Ralph
bunnahabhain wrote:
Dears.

You can say "the solutions were acidified by addition of 10 µL formic acid", but what word do you use when adding 10 µL of sodium hydroxide solution?

Thanks,
Jörg


Just doge the problem completely and write "10 ul of formic acid was added to the solution"

Peter
Peter Apps
GOM wrote:
You can also acidify to pH 9 from 11

I was simply trying to point out that it is a false argument. Nobody loves the richness of language more than me /may you prove it please/ but for a written scientific method /who says it was scientific method, not just a comment of a coworker during sample preparation ?/ we do need to keep to something like add or whatever verb you want to use :-)

May an administrator move this to around a water cooler section ? It has nothing in common with HPLC.
dblux_ wrote:
GOM wrote:
You can also acidify to pH 9 from 11

I was simply trying to point out that it is a false argument. Nobody loves the richness of language more than me /may you prove it please/ but for a written scientific method /who says it was scientific method, not just a comment of a coworker during sample preparation ?/ we do need to keep to something like add or whatever verb you want to use :-)

May an administrator move this to around a water cooler section ? It has nothing in common with HPLC.


It is a good rule in scientific and technical writing that everything should be stated as concisely as possible. If you can omit something from a sentence without changing what the sentence conveys, then omit it. In the OP's example the sentence about acidification needs only to convey that 10 ul of formic acid was added to the solution. What its effects were (acidification) is not necessary to convey that meaning, and so it can be omitted. Similarly, the addition of 10 ul of sodium hydroxide can simply be written as "10 ul of sodium hydroxide solution was added" with the dual advantages of brevity and of not having to worry about which word to use for rendering a solution more alkaline.

The Royal Society of London required its members to write and speak plainly; "They have, therefore, been most rigorous in putting in execution the only Remedy that can be found for this extravagance, and that has been a constant Resolution to reject all the amplifications, digressions, and swellings of style: to return back to the primitive purity, and shortness, when men delivered so many things almost in an equal number of words. They have exacted from all their members, a close, naked, natural way of speaking; positive expressions, clear senses, a native easiness; bringing all things as near the Mathematical plainness as they can: and preferring the language of Artizans, Countrymen, and Merchants, before that, of Wits, or Scholars."
(Thomas Sprat, The History of the Royal Society, 1667), and a plain style is still the hallmark of good scientific and technical writing.

Peter
Peter Apps
As a slight digression - although the effects on sea water's pH of a higher carbon dioxide content are often referred to as acidification, the reduction in pH is actually neutralization since sea water is slightly basic to start off with; the pH of ocean water has dropped from about 8.2 to about 8.1

Neutralization lacks the apocalyptic ring of acidification of course.

Peter
Peter Apps
@ Peter Apps,

Never have I regretted more looking up words in a dictionary! I agree concise is better.
MattM
Peter Apps wrote:
It is a good rule in scientific and technical writing that everything should be stated as concisely as possible. If you can omit something from a sentence without changing what the sentence conveys, then omit it. In the OP's example the sentence about acidification needs only to convey that 10 ul of formic acid was added to the solution. What its effects were (acidification) is not necessary to convey that meaning, and so it can be omitted. Similarly, the addition of 10 ul of sodium hydroxide can simply be written as "10 ul of sodium hydroxide solution was added" with the dual advantages of brevity and of not having to worry about which word to use for rendering a solution more alkaline.
/Yes Peter, definitely agree that it must be as precise as it can. BUT life is not a scientific paper. Imagine that you write a description of an experiment for students. IMO you have to use such words as acidify, neutralize or alkalify. Otherwise that student would add eg. 10 µL of acid solution mechanically and he wouldn't even think why and what for.
Another example. You are going to regain silver from a mixture. You can't say add 10 mL of xxx because nobody knows how much it should be. Instead you say acidify with HNO3 until litmus paper turns red (haven't seen it for ages, but universal papers are in use in analitical chemistry). Not everything is science or scientific paper. There are also recipes for people who are not well educated but execute such activities. There are also manuals for the beginners and descriptive chemistry is necessary.
Besides the sense of the question was: what is an antonym to acidify ?
The simple answer is alkalify isn't it?/
Jorg's original question was; "You can say "the solutions were acidified by addition of 10 µL formic acid", but what word do you use when adding 10 µL of sodium hydroxide solution?" which is not quite the same as asking what is the antonym of acidify. The answer I proposed is; don't use a word at all.

If you are writing for chemistry students then you can write raise / lower the pH by adding base / acid.

If you are recovering silver then say add HNO3 until litmus paper goes red. To be extra sure I would specify that the litmus paper has to be dipped into the solution - it has limited sensitivity to solution pH when lying on the bench.

Peter
Peter Apps
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