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The Nature of Chemical Reactions



In this research activity you will be looking into with greater detail what take's place in a chemical reaction. Think about the labs that you have done so far. The events of those labs can be explained by chemistry in great detail. Think about the energy required, the bonds between atoms being broken and re-formed. All these invisible events taking place when you put certain chemicals together. The simple breaking apart and reforming is the basis of the creation of all things that are matter, like you.


Many things in chemistry are not as easy however as it may seem lets look at the events of a reaction.


First to understand a reaction you need to understand the parts that go into it.


Find what these two terms mean:






In order for a reaction to work you must have energy. In the labs that you have done so far things did change

however were did the energy come from?


Find out what this is and your question will be answered.




Chemical reactions tend to be expresses in two ways. Research and find out about the two ways reactions can take place.






Are the previous reactions the only two? Can chemical reactions do other things?



The following are some simple rules that tend to hold true about reactions:


These will be very important to help you explain what you see in chemical reactions.


      Most reactions go faster at higher temperatures

      A large surface area speeds up reactions

      Concentrated solutions react faster

      Reactions are quicker at higher pressure

      Catalysts change the rates of chemical reactions What is a catalyst?

      Enzymes are biological catalysts. What is an enzyme?

      Massive, bulky molecules react slower