I know the basics of Chemistry and one thing I've always wondered if it is possible for Hydrogen to give up it's one electron? I know Hydrogen is eager to share its election through covalent bonds, but is there a scenario where Hydrogen will give up its only electron?

  • $\begingroup$ Sure, then it is just a proton. Protons are very reactive though and will probably not form in solution, rather they get transferred from one molecule to an other which greatly stabilizes. $\endgroup$
    – Jori
    Dec 30 '14 at 11:06
  • $\begingroup$ What happens to the size of hydrogen cation?It increases or decreases? $\endgroup$
    – Rabik John
    May 9 '18 at 12:10

Hydrogen can lose an electron meaning it can be in the +1 oxidation state. However, just like any other cation or anion it never occurs free in condensed matter, it always is in contact with solvent and/or anions. Moreover, because of extremely small size of proton, it is an extremely powerful Lewis acid. Consequently, in common conditions proton would react with first electron pair it comes in contact with, up to and including inert gas electron pairs and covalent bond pairs.

On the other hand, hydrogen ions are quite easy to generate in electric discharge and/or under extreme heating. In fact, producing and confinement of super-hot plasma, consisting of hydrogen ions and electrons, is an area of active research for several decades and, well, producing and confinement of relatively cold plasma is not a problem. Confinement of several billions Kelvin hot plasma, however, is still a problem.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Or just get a glimpse of tomorrow morning's sunrise. As in the plasma known as the Sun. $\endgroup$ Mar 7 '16 at 2:15

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