Hydrogen ion

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Hydrogen ion is recommended by IUPAC as a general term for all ions of hydrogen and its isotopes.[1] Depending on the charge of the ion, there are two types: positively charged ions and negatively charged ions.

Hydrogen atom (center) contains a single proton and a single electron. Removal of the electron gives a cation (left), whereas addition of an electron gives an anion (right)

Cation (positively charged)Edit

When hydrogen loses its electron, the cations can be formed:

The ions produced by the reaction of these cations with water, as well as their hydrates, are also called 'hydrogen ions'.

In connection with acids, "hydrogen ions" usually refers to hydrons.

Anion (negatively charged)Edit

Hydrogen anions are formed when additional electrons are acquired:

  • Hydride: general name referring to the negative ion of any hydrogen isotope (H)
  • Protide: 1H
  • Deuteride: 2H, D
  • Tritide: 3H, T


  1. McNaught A.D. and Wilkinson A. 1997. Compendium of chemical terminology. 2nd ed, Blackwell Science. ISBN 0-86542-684-8 also online