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Catalysts

Posted: Tue Mar 06, 2018 10:22 am
by Abigail Volk 1F
Can someone explain how a catalyst can lower activation energy but increase the rate of a reaction? I need help with the conceptual understanding of this

Re: Catalysts

Posted: Tue Mar 06, 2018 10:27 am
by David Minasyan 1C
AS far as I know, lowering the activation energy of the reaction means the reaction has less of a barrier to overcome so the reaction would proceed faster.

Re: Catalysts

Posted: Tue Mar 06, 2018 10:28 am
by Hannah Guo 3D
The catalyst lowers the activation energy by providing the reaction an alternative energy pathway. With a catalyst, more collisions result in a reaction because the reactants need less energy to get to the transition state (with the highest energy), so the rate of reaction increases.

Hope it helps!

Re: Catalysts

Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 11:08 am
by Mary Becerra 2D
The concept part of it would be that there is an inverse relationship between the activation energy and the rate of a reaction: the lower the activation energy, the higher the rate of the reaction. A catalyst offers an alternative pathway with a lower activation energy, therefore, the reaction goes faster.

Re: Catalysts

Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:01 pm
by JamesAntonios 1E
The activation energy determines the rate of reaction. To increase the rate of reaction, the activation energy or energy barrier must be lowered. For example, when rolling a ball up a hill and then letting it roll down, the get up the hill is the activation energy. A catalyst just builds a tunnel through the hill to get to the other side.

Re: Catalysts

Posted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 5:57 pm
by Yu Chong 2H
Since the rate of reaction and also activation energy depends on successful collision of molecules in the correct orientation, we can think of catalysts as things that helps the reactants collide more frequently in the correct orientation. Some catalyst such as many metals actually allow reactants to adhere to itself. So the reaction takes place on the surface of the catalyst. If you think about it this way, it will be easier for a reactant to collide with another reactant that is already adhere to the surface of the catalyst, thus the catalyst will lower the activation energy and increase the rate of reaction.