Identify that ammonia can be synthesised from its component gases, nitrogen and hydrogen
Describe that synthesis of ammonia occurs as a reversible reaction that will reach equilibrium
Identify the reaction of hydrogen with nitrogen as exothermic
- Ammonia is synthesised from nitrogen gas and hydrogen gas.
- Haber Process: The industrial synthesis of ammonia.
- The nitrogen gas used in the Haber process can be obtained through either:
- The catalytic reaction between natural gas and air, which removes oxygen and leaves nitrogen.
- The fractional distillation of liquid air.
- The hydrogen used in the Haber process can be obtained through one of the following:
- The catalytic reaction between natural gas and steam, and natural gas and air.
- The electrolysis of water.
- Generally, catalytic reactions are used to obtain both nitrogen and hydrogen gas.
The main method of preparation of hydrogen and nitrogen gases for the Haber process
- The synthesis of ammonia is a reversible exothermic equilibrium:
- For every mole of ammonia formed, 46 kJ of energy is released.
- At room temperature and atmospheric pressure, the equilibrium lies well to the left.
- By altering temperature and pressure, the equilibrium can be shifted in the forward direction.