Summary of Integrated Rate Laws of Chemical Reactions

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OpenStax Chemistry 2e

The rate laws far relate the and the of reactants. We can also determine a second form of each rate law that relates the concentrations of reactants and . These are called integrated rate laws. We can use an integrated rate law to determine the amount of reactant or product present after a period of time or to estimate the time required for a reaction to proceed to a certain extent. For example, an integrated rate law is used to determine the length of time a radioactive material must be stored for its radioactivity to decay to a safe level.

Using calculus, the differential rate law for a chemical reaction can be integrated with respect to time to give an equation that relates the amount of reactant or product present in a reaction mixture to the elapsed time of the reaction. This process can either be very straightforward or very complex, depending on the complexity of the differential rate law.

The of a reaction (t1/2) is the time required for one-half of a given amount of reactant to be consumed. In each succeeding half-life, half of the remaining concentration of the reactant is consumed.

Below is a picture summary of rate laws:

Summary of Rate Laws. Source: OpenStax Chemistry 2e