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07.05 Le Châtelier's Principle

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Herve Heussaff

on 9 April 2014

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Transcript of 07.05 Le Châtelier's Principle

07.05 Le Châtelier's Principle
The Ostwald Process
The Ostwald Process is a 2 stage chemical process converting ammonia to nitric acid (HNO3). In the process ammonia is oxidized to form nitric oxide & nitrogen dioxide which is then absorbed in water which in turn forms nitric acid(www.pem-news.de, n.d.).

Through the Ostwald process nitric acid is used in fertilizers and pharmaceuticals and cause of its chemical reaction with some compounds it's used in rocket fuel, explosives, and TNT(www.hpa.org.uk, n.d.).

The Ostwald process was developed by Wilhelm Ostwald after years of research in 1902 and patented. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1909 for this. He was from Riga, which is in Latvia(www.nobelprize.org, 1966)

The process was and is very important cause it's any easy way to make nitric acid in 2 steps. Nitric acid is used in so many things as fertilizer and others and is at high demand. So the process is still being used cause it's reliable and the easiest way to make nitric acid to meet the demand.

equation is different for each step,Step 1:4NH3(g)+5O2(g)→4NO (g)+6H2O(g).ammonia is heated with oxygen,this yields nitric oxide(NO)and water as products.Step 2:2NO(g)+O2(g)→2NO2(g)nitric oxide(NO) combined with oxygen again to create nitrogen dioxide(NO2).Step 3:3NO2(g)+H2O(l)→2HNO3(as)+NO(gas)nitrogen dioxide is absorbed with water to create nitric acid(HNO3)as an AS.This yields nitric oxide(NO).Step 4:4NO2(gas)+O2(gas)+2H2O(liquid)→4HNO3(as)nitric oxide created along with nitric acid is recycled & combined with oxygen & water to create a higher concentration of nitric acid(HNO3).This is exothermic(www.pem-news.de, n.d.)

Referencing LeChatelier's principle,since it's exothermic,conditions favoring forward reaction and shifting equilibrium right would decrease temperature,increase concentration,increase pressure,and increase volume
By decreasing temperature,because it's exothermic,equilibrium will shift left,away from added energy. For favorable conditions we want to decrease temperature. By increasing concentration,equilibrium will shift away from added product or reactant.Since we're constantly adding water & oxygen for the process as reactants,increasing concentration creates favorable conditions for equilibrium.For pressure & volume,equilibrium shifts to the side of the reaction with the last moles to ease pressure.Taking step one's balanced equation for example...the right side has less moles, so with increasing the pressure it would shift to the right. Which is favorable for the forward reaction.
Cause of its reaction when combined with organic compounds,most industrial applications probably don't use the most favorable conditions during the Ostwald process cause it will produce unsafe concentration and corrosive tendencies within nitric acid.This would be a hazard,which is why nitric acid is in explosives

The catalyst that is used for this reaction is a platinum gauze(www.digipac.ca, n.d.)
Sources Cited:
Nobel Prize. Wilhem Ostwalk Biography. Retrieved November 14, 2012., from: http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/chemistry/laureates/1909/ostwald-bio.html

Umicore. The Ostwald process. Retrieved November 14, 2012, from: http://www.pem-news.de/104/items/the-ostwald-process.html

Digipac. Manufacturing Nitrates: The Ostwald process. Retrieved November 14, 2012, from: http://www.digipac.ca/chemical/mtom/contents/chapter3/fritzhaber_2.htm

Encyclopedia Britannica. Ostwald process. Retrieved November 14, 2012, from: http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/434511/Ostwald-process

Health Protection Agency. Nitric Acid General Inormation. Retrieved November 14, 2012, from: http://www.hpa.org.uk/webc/HPAwebFile/HPAweb_C/1194947349543
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