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Role of pressure and temperature in chemical reactions

  1. Dec 15, 2016 #1

    I have a feeling and I would like to know if it is true.
    I feel that if a reaction between two gases, takes place in high temperature only (perhaps with the presence of a catalyst), then if we increase the pressure high enough and keep the temperature low, the reaction may still take place.

    In other words, I think that it is quite equivalent the effect of increased temperature and increased pressure in the kinetics of a chemical reaction.

    Is that true?

    Can you give me an example of such reactions?

  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 15, 2016 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    At this level of a handwavy generalization the answer is: yes, no, maybe.

    Technically yes, elevated temperatures are used to either speed up the reaction (kinetic factor) or to move the equilibrium to the right (thermodynamic factor) to make the reaction practical, but there is nothing that makes them absolutely necessary.

    However, if the amount of products at equilibrium present in the mixture is below a single molecule per mole of reactants, do you consider it to mean "reaction took place"? I don't have an example at hand, but it is not difficult to calculate ΔG for such a reaction from estimates of equilibrium constants and it will be in a reasonable range (as in: yes, we know reactions with such ΔG).
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