Dismiss Notice
Check out the new Application Assistant, where you can calculate your LizzyM score, see how you rank compared to other applicants, and see a list of schools where similar students were accepted.

Chemical Equilibrium and Coefficients

Discussion in 'MCAT Study Question Q&A' started by somuchwater, 10.29.14.

  1. SDN is made possible through member donations, sponsorships, and our volunteers. Learn about SDN's nonprofit mission.
  1. somuchwater

    somuchwater 2+ Year Member

    My question regards chemical equilibrium and reaction quotient.

    I have always understood these to measures of the ratios of concentrations, where the equilibrium constant is the ratio at equilibrium and Q is at other points. What I don't understand (and cannot find the solution for this anywhere online) is why we apply the coefficient as an exponent. It makes perfect sense to me that if the equation is say A --> 2B + C, that the equation should be

    [2B][C] / [A]. However I don't understand why it is written as [2B]^2 [C] / [A]

    For example, if we start with only A, we would get 2Bs and 1 C for every A consumed. This would continue until we hit equilibrium.

    So if we start with 10 As and equilibrium is when we have 5 As... wouldn't the final concentrations be

    (10 B) (5 C) / ( 5 A)

    instead of

    (100 B) ( 5 C ) / (5 A)
  2. SDN Members don't see this ad. About the ads.
  3. Cawolf

    Cawolf 2+ Year Member

    Medical Student

About the ads

Share This Page