I don't understand what "forward reaction" and "reverse reaction" is. And can someone please illustrate with much more detail what each arrow represents because I am not understanding what my study guide is telling me.

- Feb 15th 2009, 12:23 AMs3aPotential Energy Graph for a Reaction (can someone explain the graph please?)
I don't understand what "forward reaction" and "reverse reaction" is. And can someone please illustrate with much more detail what each arrow represents because I am not understanding what my study guide is telling me.

- Feb 15th 2009, 05:35 AMCaptainBlack
The forward reaction is:

$\displaystyle X+Y \to XY$

the reverse reaction is:

$\displaystyle XY \to X+Y$

Each arrow shows the energy barrier to that reaction and/or the change in energy when the reaction has completed.

Both reactions (forward and reverse) occur and the final mixture of feed stocks and product and the speed of the reactions (effectivly the time to equilibrium) depends on the energies shown.

$\displaystyle B$ and $\displaystyle D$ are the height of the energy barrier against the forward and reverse reactions without catalysis respectivly, and $\displaystyle E$ and $\displaystyle F$ with catalysis etc.

CB