Question

A solution of equal concentrations of lactic acid and sodium lactate was found to have pH=3.85....

A solution of equal concentrations of lactic acid and sodium lactate was found to have pH=3.85.

(a) What are the values of pKa, and Ka of lactic acid?

(b) What would the pH be if the acid had twice the concentration of the salt?

(c) Plot a graph showing a mole fraction of Lactic acid and Lactate with respect to pH. (You can use excel or any software of your choice).

(d)There are many organic acids and bases in our cells, and their presence modifies the pH of the fluids inside them.

It is useful to be able to assess the pH of solutions of acids and bases and to make inferences from measured values of the pH. Assuming Lactic acid and Lactate is the only buffering components in the cell, can you comment about the composition (molar ratio) of Lactic acid and Lactate inside the cell? Will this be a good buffering system for the cell?

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