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    Understanding Gibbs Free Energy Change, Spontaneous Reaction

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    The attached problem file shows the standard Gibbs Free Energy Change for two reactions. Considering these values, which reaction is more favoured or spontaneous?

    A reaction with a delta Go = 16 kcal mole-1?
    Or a reaction with a delta Go = -16 kcal mole-1?

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    (please refer to the attached solution file to view the Greek letters)

    For a reaction to be favoured (sometimes called "spontaneous"), the energy level of the products must be less than the energy level of the starting reactants.
    We can think of the energy levels in terms of a hill.

    If the energy level of the products is greater than the energy level of the reactants, the ...

    Solution Summary

    The solution provides a description of one of the key concepts of introductory chemistry and/or thermodynamics: how to determine whether a chemical reaction will proceed spontaneously. (Nomenclature hint: Spontaneous reactions are also called "favoured of favored reactions".) After studying this solution, the student should have a solid understanding of how to approach this very typical exam-type question.