Investigating Chemical Equilibrium Lab
Date: 30th April 2013
Due Date: 15th May 2013
Prepared For: M. Seraji
Prepared by: Andrea Odunze
Many reactions proceed to a state of equilibrium. A chemical reaction at equilibrium, where the rates of the forward reaction and reverse reaction are equal, looks like this:
A + B AB
There are three factors, according to Le Chatelier’s principle, that affect the equilibrium position and equilibrium constant. These are the concentrations of products and reactants, changes in temperature and gas volume. When influenced by these factors, the chemical system has to experience an equilibrium shift, a change in concentrations of the products (shift to the right) or a change in concentrations of the reactants (shift to the left) in order to achieve equilibrium. The purpose of this experiment was to interpret and further understand the effect of these factors on a chemical equilibrium using Le Chatelier’s principle.
Equilibrium is a state of physical balance ("Equilibrium”). A chemical system in a state of equilibrium means that both reactants and products exist together in the system and there is a balance of external influences on the system. This is as a result of some of the product molecules formed in the forward reaction having enough energy to convert back to reactants in a reverse reaction. The conditions required for a chemical system to be at a chemical equilibrium are; the reaction has to happen in a closed system, the concentrations of both reactants and products should be constant and microscopic variables such as temperature and pressure have to be constant (DiGiuseppe 420). In a chemical equilibrium, the point where the concentrations of the products and reactants are constant is called the equilibrium position. This can be mathematically described in an equilibrium law. It is further defined in the equation by a value called the equilibrium constant, Kc (DiGiuseppe 421).
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