4.5.1.2

4.5.1.2 Reaction profiles

Content

  • Chemical reactions can occur only when reacting particles collide with each other and with sufficient energy. The minimum amount of energy that particles must have to react is called the activation energy.

Reaction profiles can be used to show the relative energies of reactants and products, the activation energy and the overall energy change of a reaction.

  • Students should be able to:
  • draw simple reaction profiles (energy level diagrams) for exothermic and endothermic reactions showing the relative energies of reactants and products, the activation energy and the overall energy change, with a curved line to show the energy as the reaction proceeds
  • use reaction profiles to identify reactions as exothermic or endothermic
  • explain that the activation energy is the energy needed for a reaction to occur.