I have been reading this thread, but excuse me if I am bringing us back to something that has been covered and I just forgot it, because I am going to do it simply because I don't think this has been made explicit.Originally posted by Chemicalsuperfreak
If the atoms get far apart, they will attract, if they get to close, they will repel, exactly like a spring. It takes energy to break a bond, it also takes energy to make a bond. This says nothing about how much energy is released when the bond is broken. Just like the force keeping the boulder on the cliff has nothing to say about how much energy is released when the boulder falls off.
Instead of trying to abstractly talk about energy required to break and energy made in breaking etc, how about we take the conversation down a level to exactly what it is that a bond is? Will this help?
What CSF has just said is getting there, but does it help if we starting thinking of bond energies in light of a bond being shared electrons? (Covalent bonds anyway, since they are the types of bonds broken/made in metabolic pathways.)
Bonds have always been explained to me, as electrons being shared between two atoms so that each atom has its valence shells filled by the shared atoms... Beyond this, the technicality of it has never really been explained to me, so perhaps CSF, you could explain to me how it is that such a thing is related to energy? If we understand how valence fulfillment is energy related, perhaps we can see how unsharing electrons etc can affect energy.
I am actually having a lot of trouble myself seeing how all of this relates to energy release/intake. This is a great question STAii, and no, I at least certainly do not think you are being annoying. Even once we understand the energy relation between valence electron sharing states, I am still unable to figure out how that energy is coupled into a useful form... To say that ATP is a high energy molecule doesn't explain to me how that energy that it contains is tranformed into...motion, or....breaking other bonds...or anything like that. Its all very strange. (obviously, simply because we don't yet understand it.)
I look forward to having it all not seem very strange