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Alex Harutunian

Kinetics lectures
Kinetics Lecture 1
will a reaction happen?- thermodynamics
how fast will it happen?-kinetics
how far will a reaction happen?-equilibrium
Four main factors that influence how quickly a reaction takes place:
1. collisions- for two molecules to react with each other they must collide
2. activation energy- the activation energy must be overcome

spontaneous reaction or not?


activation energy is the transition state
how do molecules overcome activation energy? where is it coming from?
Why is there activation energy? --need enough kinetic energy when they

collide

Alex Harutunian

electrons go through an ugly and congested transition state and that is why
kinetic energy is needed
factors that affect rates:
1. Temperature

2. amount of reactants-more molecules = more collision


3. Surface area
4. Catalysts

What is a catalyst?- a substance that alters the rate of a reaction without


being used up or permanently changed chemically.

Alex Harutunian

How does it work?- it changes the energy pathway for a chemical reaction
and provides and alternate route that lowers the activation energy meaning
more particles have the required energy to undergo a successful collision.
what a catalyst does:

lowers activation energy


more molecules have kinetic energy to successfully collide
reaction speeds up
reaches equilibrium quicker

what a catalyst does not do:


G

changes

change the position of equilibrium


get used up in course of reaction

equilibrium based on spontaneous


enzymes are biological catalysts
reaction mechanisms: many chemical reactions consist of multiple steps.
Together these combine to make the overall reaction. For example:
2NO2 + F2 = 2NO2F

this follows the mechanism:

Step 1: NO2 + F2 = NO2F + F (slow)


Step 2:

NO 2+ F=NO 2 F
2 NO 2+ F 2=2 NO 2

Overall Rate Law: Rate = k[NO2][F2]

(fast)

Alex Harutunian

Rate Limiting step:

slow step

Intermediate:
produced in one step, gets used up in another--isn't part of
the balanced equation
Catalyst:

used => produced

Good Mechanisms:
1. The molecularity (coefficients) of the rate limiting step is consistent
with the experimentally determined rate law
2. The mechanism is consistent with the overall balanced equation
Kinetics lecture 2
Concentration vs. Time-- A ---> B

As time increases, concentration decreases (A) (vice versa for B)


What happens to the rate of the reaction as the concentration changes?
2A ---> B
Reactions tend to be fastest at the beginning and slow down

Alex Harutunian

Measuring reaction rate


[ Products]
t
[ Reactants]
t

concentration = moles per liter. time = seconds


Mole ratios and rates
N29g0 + 3H2(g) ---> 2NH3(g) N2 is three times faster than H2
Method of Initial Rates
[ ]
t

y
x

[ ] = concentration

Vary the concentration of each reactant (only one at a time), and


measure the initial rate of the reaction
How a reactants concentration influences the initial rate determine its
order
General format of a rate law: Rate = k[A]n[B]m

1. Determine the order of each reactant


2. Determine the value of k
3. Determine the units of k
4. Determine the initial rate of another trial