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Lecture question

Posted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 3:23 pm
by Parsia Vazirnia 2L
In lecture it was mentioned that we use the reaction quotient Q at any time whenever the reaction has not reached equilibrium, and we use the K constant for whenever it is in equilibrium. My question is how are we supposed to know if a reaction is in equilibrium or not? When do I know to plug into the reaction quotient or the equilibrium constant?

Re: Lecture question

Posted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 3:40 pm
by Christine_Mavilian_3E
In the course reader, it mentions that we calculate the Reaction Quotient (Q) to determine which direction a reaction will proceed. It also says that you can calculate the reaction quotient at any time during the reaction and compare it to the Equilibrium Constant K. Typically in a problem, the value of your equilibrium constant K is given and you'll be asked to determine if the reaction is at equilibrium. In order to do this, you use the reaction quotient. If the reaction quotient (Q) is greater than K then there are more products than reactants and the reverse reaction is favored. If Q is less than K then there are more reactants than products and as a result, a forward reaction is favored.

Your calculated Reaction Quotient (Q) will help you determine if the reaction is or is not in equilibrium.

I hope this helps!