AP Chem question

gigi9

Someone plz give me a good explaination on how to "Balance Oxidation- Reduction Equations." Plz show me the steps and an example of how to do this type of equations. Thanks a lot.

Related Introductory Physics Homework Help News on Phys.org

arcnets

gigi9,
photosynthesis might be a good example. Let's start from
H2O + CO2 -> C6H12O6 + O2.
First step, let's add what we have.
Left-hand side: 2H + 3O + 1C.
Right-hand side: 12H + 8O + 6C. So the formula is not balanced.

As a first step, we should look for an element that appears only in one component on each side. This is carbon. So, to balance carbon, we have to use 6 molecules of carbon dioxide:
H2O + 6CO2 -> C6H12O6 + O2.
Let's add what we have.
Left-hand side: 2H + 13O + 6C.
Right-hand side: 12H + 8O + 6C.

Is there another element which appears only once on each side? Yes, hydrogen! So we better use 6 molecules of water:
6H2O + 6CO2 -> C6H12O6 + O2.
Left-hand side: 12H + 18O + 6C.
Right-hand side: 12H + 8O + 6C.

We can balance this by adding more oxygen on the RHS:
6H2O + 6CO2 -> C6H12O6 + 6O2.

Now it's balanced.

Chemicalsuperfreak

Originally posted by arcnets
gigi9,
photosynthesis might be a good example. Let's start from
H2O + CO2 -> C6H12O6 + O2.
First step, let's add what we have.
Left-hand side: 2H + 3O + 1C.
Right-hand side: 12H + 8O + 6C. So the formula is not balanced.

As a first step, we should look for an element that appears only in one component on each side. This is carbon. So, to balance carbon, we have to use 6 molecules of carbon dioxide:
H2O + 6CO2 -> C6H12O6 + O2.
Let's add what we have.
Left-hand side: 2H + 13O + 6C.
Right-hand side: 12H + 8O + 6C.

Is there another element which appears only once on each side? Yes, hydrogen! So we better use 6 molecules of water:
6H2O + 6CO2 -> C6H12O6 + O2.
Left-hand side: 12H + 18O + 6C.
Right-hand side: 12H + 8O + 6C.

We can balance this by adding more oxygen on the RHS:
6H2O + 6CO2 -> C6H12O6 + 6O2.

Now it's balanced.
That's good arcnets, but gigi is talking about balancing redox reactions, which is a bit more complicated than regular stoichiometry.

HazZy

why don't you post an example and we'll work from there gigi9.

Physics Forums Values

We Value Quality
• Topics based on mainstream science
• Proper English grammar and spelling
We Value Civility
• Positive and compassionate attitudes
• Patience while debating
We Value Productivity
• Disciplined to remain on-topic
• Recognition of own weaknesses
• Solo and co-op problem solving