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superacid

Also contains definitions of: magic acid, superbase

A medium having a high acidity, generally greater than that of 100 wt.% sulfuric acid. The common superacids are made by dissolving a powerful Lewis acid (e.g. SbF5) in a suitable Br√łnsted acid such as HF or HSO3F. (An equimolar mixture of HSO3F and SbF5 is known by the trade name 'magic acid'.) In a biochemical context 'superacid catalysis' is sometimes used to denote catalysis by metal ions analogous to catalysis by hydrogen ions. By analogy, a compound having a very high basicity, such as lithium diisopropylamide, is called a 'superbase'.
Source:
PAC, 1994, 66, 1077 (Glossary of terms used in physical organic chemistry (IUPAC Recommendations 1994)) on page 1169
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IUPAC. Compendium of Chemical Terminology, 2nd ed. (the "Gold Book"). Compiled by A. D. McNaught and A. Wilkinson. Blackwell Scientific Publications, Oxford (1997). XML on-line corrected version: http://goldbook.iupac.org (2006-) created by M. Nic, J. Jirat, B. Kosata; updates compiled by A. Jenkins. ISBN 0-9678550-9-8. doi:10.1351/goldbook.
Last update: 2014-02-24; version: 2.3.3.
DOI of this term: doi:10.1351/goldbook.S06135.
Original PDF version: http://www.iupac.org/goldbook/S06135.pdf. The PDF version is out of date and is provided for reference purposes only. For some entries, the PDF version may be unavailable.
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