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Equilibrium the ultimate conversion

  1. Oct 13, 2013 #1
    Hello,

    I am wondering conceptually why the maximum conversion of products is made at chemical equilibrium? I was thinking if you use le chatelier to push towards products, the conversion will be higher.

    Sorry if this sounds too vague, my prof's lecture was called "Equilibrium: The ultimate conversion''
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 13, 2013 #2

    UltrafastPED

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    Le Chatelier reaches a new equilibrium ... so the result still holds.
     
  4. Oct 13, 2013 #3
    Didn't think about that, thank you. But can't you be past equilibrium, and during that time beyond equilibrium, the conversion is higher?
     
  5. Oct 13, 2013 #4

    UltrafastPED

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    But what happens under le Chatelier? The principle is clear: their is a resistance to the change, and this resistance results in a new equilibrium.

    Consider an exothermic reaction - there is a certain amount of heat given off. But if we add just a bit more of something and there was no resistance (i.e., le Chatelier fails!) then you would obtain more heat ... and add a bit more, and you get more heat ... seems like it cheats on the first law of thermodynamics!
     
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