Problem: Aluminum sulfate, known as cake alum, has a wide range of uses, from dyeing leather and cloth to purifying sewage. In aqueous solution, it reacts with base to form a white precipitate.Write balanced total and net ionic equations for its reaction with aqueous NaOH.

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For this problem, we are being asked to write the balanced total and net ionic equations  of the reaction between NaOH and aluminum sulfate

Aluminum sulfate  Al3+ + SO43- AlSO4

Double displacement reaction the positive ions (cations) and the negative ions (anions) of the two reactants will swap or switch places

The initial aqueous reaction will appear as:

Al2(SO4)3 (aq) + NaOH (aq)  Al(OH)3 + Na2SO

Recall the Solubility Rules:

Soluble Ionic Compounds:

 Group 1A ions (Li+, Na+, K+, etc.) and Ammonium ion (NH4+) are soluble
Nitrates (NO3-), Acetates (CH3COO- or C2H3O2-), and most Perchlorates (ClO4-) are soluble
Cl-, Br-, and I- are soluble except when paired with Ag+, Pb2+, Cu+, Hg22+
Sulfates (SO42-) are soluble except those of Ca2+, Sr2+, Ba2+, Ag+, and Pb2+

Insoluble Ionic Compounds:

Hydroxides (OH-) and Sulfides (S2-) are insoluble except when with Group 1A ions (Li+, Na+, K+, etc.) and ammonium ion (NH4+) and Ca2+, Sr2+, Ba2+
Carbonates (CO32-) and Phosphates (PO43-) are insoluble except when with Group 1A ions (Li+, Na+, K+, etc.) and ammonium ion (NH4+)

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Problem Details

Aluminum sulfate, known as cake alum, has a wide range of uses, from dyeing leather and cloth to purifying sewage. In aqueous solution, it reacts with base to form a white precipitate.

Write balanced total and net ionic equations for its reaction with aqueous NaOH.

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What scientific concept do you need to know in order to solve this problem?

Our tutors have indicated that to solve this problem you will need to apply the Complete Ionic Equations concept. You can view video lessons to learn Complete Ionic Equations. Or if you need more Complete Ionic Equations practice, you can also practice Complete Ionic Equations practice problems.

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Based on our data, we think this problem is relevant for Professor Sawyer's class at ASU.

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Our data indicates that this problem or a close variation was asked in Chemistry: The Molecular Nature of Matter and Change - Silberberg 8th Edition. You can also practice Chemistry: The Molecular Nature of Matter and Change - Silberberg 8th Edition practice problems.