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What is equilibrium?

1.

As any reaction proceeds, [reactants] decreases and [products] increases.

2.
Reversible reaction: a reaction which can go both ways.
3.
Equilibrium: is the point when the [reactants] and [products] becomes constant.
4.
Equilibrium is reached when no more changes can be observed. SQ1
5.
Equilibrium is recognized by constancy of macroscopic properties in a closed system at
constant temperature. SQ2
6.
Macroscopic properties are observable properties or measurable properties like pressure,
concentration, color, size, volume and mass.SQ3 and SQ4
7.
Closed system is a system containing a closed amount of matter. SQ5
8.
At equilibrium: two opposite processes occur at the same rate.

9.
Each set of equilibrium concentrations is called an equilibrium position.
10.
Steady state: indicates a situation where macroscopic properties are constant but
equilibrium does not exist as the system is not closed e.g a blue Busen burner flame.
BQ1
11. Equilibrium in physical changes: Solubility of iodine SQ7, Vapor pressure of water SQ8
12. Equilibrium in chemical reactions: NO2-N2O4 system SQ9
13. Equilibrium is dynamic in nature since at equilibrium two microscopic processes are
occurring in opposite direction at the same rate resulting in no observable macroscopic
changes.
BQ2 and 3

Extra Question: What does each of the following symbols stand for? (g), (l), ()

14. Demonstration: FeSCN2+ system.


SQ10-14
15. Factors affecting the equilibrium state: concentration and temperature. SQ15
16. Adding a catalyst or a noble gas does not alter the state of equilibrium. SQ16
17. Equilibrium may not reached in certain equilibrium system because the activation
energy of the forward reaction is too high.
18. Le Chatelier's Principle: if an equilibrium system is subjected to a change processes will
occur to partially counteract the imposed change.
SQ18
19. Use LCP to predict the effect of a change in concentration on an equilibrium system.
20. Use LCP to predict the effect of a change in pressure on an equilibrium system.
21. Use LCP to predict the effect of a change in volume on an equilibrium system.
22. Use LCP to predict the effect of a change in temperature on an equilibrium system.
BQ4, CR4, CR5, CR7,CR12, CT3 and CT4
23. Low temperature is required in the Haber Process for a desirable good yield and high
temperature is necessary for a satisfactory rate. The compromise used industrially
involves an intermediate temperature around 450C and even then the success of the
process depends upon the presence of a suitable catalyst to achieve a reasonable
reaction rate.
24. High pressures are required in the Haber Process for a good yield and a satisfactory
high rate. It is expensive and dangerous to build up a pressure. A pressure of 200 atm is
actually used as a compromise.
BQ5
25. Mass Action Expression: For a general reaction: + +
[] []

Mass action expression = Q = [][]


26. At equilibrium: mass action expression is constant and is given a special name, equilibrium
constant, Keq
[] []

Keq = [][]
27. Concentrations of solids and liquids are NOT included in the equilibrium expression.
These values are constant and are incorporate in the value of Keq directly. . SQ19-23, CT8
28. Temperature and the nature of solvent are the only values which determine the value of
the equilibrium constant.
SQ25
29. There is only one equilibrium constant for a particular system at a particular temperature
but there are an infinite number of equilibrium positions
30. Significance of value of K
SQ26-29

K>1
system consists mostly of products
equilibrium lies to the right
reaction goes to completion

Example
B2 (g) 2 B (g)

Kp = 10.0 at certain temp

K<1
system consists mostly of reactants
equilibrium lies to the left
reaction does not occur to a significant
effect but the reverse reaction occurs.

Example
A2 (g) 2 A (g)

Kp = 0.03 at certain temp

At equilibrium, amount of B > B2


At equilibrium, amount of A2> A2
31. If reactants and products are mixed are mixed, three things may occur:
An equilibrium is established
A reaction occurs in the forward direction
A reaction occurs in the backward direction.
To find out what is occurring one needs to find the value of the mass action expression, Q
and compare it to Keq.
BQ6
a. If Q >Keq reaction is NOT at equilibrium the backward reaction is taking place
(system shifts to the left).
b. If Q = Keq reaction is at equilibrium No shift occurs.
c. If Q <Keq reaction is NOT at equilibrium the forward reaction is taking place (system
shifts to the right).
32. A typical equilibrium exercise: Given equilibrium quantities of reactants and products find
the equilibrium constant
33. A typical equilibrium exercise: Given initial quantities of reactants and at least one
equilibrium quantity find Keq
BQ9
34. A typical equilibrium exercise: Given initial quantities of reactants and Keq, find the
equilibrium quantities
BQ7
35. A typical equilibrium exercise: Given initial quantities of products and Keq, find the
equilibrium quantities
BQ8
36. A typical equilibrium exercise: Given initial quantities of reactants and products and Keq,
find the equilibrium quantities
Example 1 p34, CR9

Sections 1.8-1.9 self-study