Comment on this post with your basic chemistry questions like "I saw a demonstration where HCl was added to a red solution and it turned blue. When water was added, it turned red again. Do you have any idea what the red stuff is?"
I am not an expert in organic chemistry, however.
Answer to above question: "You saw cobalt(II) chloride switching ligands. When cobalt(II) chloride dissolves in water, like all ionic compounds, it dissociates into cobalt(II) and chloride ions. Some water molecules are attracted to the cobalt(II) ion and form what is known as an aqua ion. In this case, the aqua ion is red. When hydrochloric acid is added, some of the water molecules are replaced by chloride ions. This chloro ion is blue. When water is added, the concentration of chloride is reduced and more aqua ions are formed again, turning it red."
Or something like that. I will probably write a separate post for each answer.
You could try going to Sciencemadness.org if my answer is unsatisfactory.
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