MadSci Network: Chemistry

Re: Why is HF a more dangerous acid than HCl?

Area: Chemistry
Posted By: Artem Evdokimov, Grad student, Structural Biology (Chemistry)
Date: Mon Dec 30 17:04:24 1996
Message ID: 847747396.Ch

Dear User,

HF dissolves glass because it reacts with silicon oxide (main component of 
common glass) forming soluble silicon floride. It is more dangerous 
and toxic because it is not physiological (unlike HCl or H3PO4) , F ion
has a covalent radii close to one of hydrogen, yet it F is not H by any
means, and thus cellular mechanisms are disturbed. In short, fluoride ion
is rather poisonous.



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