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GRAHAMs LAW and COMBINED GAS LAW

By: Ruth Anne Abalos

Grahams Law of Diffusion and Effusion


What is diffusion? Diffusion is the natural tendency of molecules to flow from higher concentrations to lower concentrations. When the barrier between two substances is removed (as shown on Figure 1), the molecules will diffuse throughout the entire container. While the number of molecules in the container is the same as it was before the barrier was removed, the substances are now at lower concentrations. The rate of diffusion depends on the weight of the moleculesheavy molecules diffuse more slowly than light molecules. Diffusion can also be defined simply as the movement of a gas into a space or the mixing of one gas with another. Figure 1:

What about effusion? Effusion describes the escape of a gas through a tiny hole. If gases are placed in a container with porous walls, such as in a balloon, the particles effuse through its walls, causing the volume to gradually decrease. If gases are placed in a container with porous walls, such as in a balloon, the particles effuse through its walls, causing the volume to gradually decrease. Both diffusion and effusion occur

because of the vast amount of space between gas particles and the kinetic energy of the gas particles. The constant, rapid, random motion of gas particles makes them spread out rapidly in all directions and distribute themselves uniformly throughout any container. Different gases comprise particles with different masses. In 1832 British chemist Thomas Graham proposed that the rates of effusion and diffusion of gases are inversely proportional to the square roots of the masses of their particles. In other words, gases made up of smaller particles effuse and diffuse faster than gases made up of larger particles. This principle is now known as Grahams law. Since the average kinetic energy of a gas particle, mv2, is the same for all gases at the same temperature, less massive gas particles must travel faster than heavier particles. Because they move faster, atoms of lighter gases such as helium effuse through the tiny openings of porous balloon walls, for example, more quickly than the heavier molecules of gases such as oxygen or nitrogen. The following may be interpretations of Grahams Law. The rate of diffusion or effusion is proportional to the mass of the molecules. The lighter the molecules, the faster to diffuse, and large molecules are slower than small molecules. The rate of diffusion or effusion is inversely proportional to the square root of mass. Kinetic energy is determined by the temperature of the gas. At the same temperature and KE, large molecules move slowly.

The equation formulated by Graham is like this: V

KE =

V = rate of diffusion or effusion m = mass KE = kinetic energy For example: Gas 1: KE1 = Gas 2: KE1 = KE1=KE2 = = Cancel the and let the equation be like this: Divide both sides by and you will get this:

Extract the roots of the volume, so square root both sides and will look like this:

The degrees will be cancelled y the radical sign and gives the formula:

The formula for Grahams Law of Diffusion and Effusion

Examples: Find the rate of diffusion of He and Cl (diatomic) gas. Given: Gas A (He) m1=4.00 g/mol x or V1=? Gas B (Cl) Cl2 = (35.45x2) = 70.90 m2= 70.90 g/mol x or V2=? = 4.21

He diffuses 4.21 times than Cl. He has a lighter molar mass than Cl.

Thomas Graham 1848

Combined Gas Law


The main distinguishing property of gases is their uncanny ability to be compressed into smaller and smaller spaces. Gases are also the least complex state of matter. Don't get it wrong, just because they are the simplest doesn't mean that they are not one of the most interesting and useful states of matter. The combined gas law states the ratio of the product of pressure and volume and the absolute temperature of a gas is equal to a constant. There is no official founder for this law; it is merely an amalgamation of the three previously discovered laws. These laws each relate one thermodynamic variable to another mathematically while holding everything else constant. Charles' law states that volume and temperature are directly proportional to each other as long as pressure is held constant (V1T2=V2T1). Boyle's law asserts that pressure and volume are inversely proportional to each other at fixed temperature (P1V1=P2V2). Finally, Gay-Lussac's law introduces a direct proportionality between temperature and pressure as long as it is at a constant volume (P1T2=P2T1). The inter-dependence of these variables is shown in the combined gas law, which clearly states that: The ratio between the pressure-volume product and the temperature of a system remains constant. It can be like this: Volume is directly proportional to temperature and inversely proportional to pressure. In its initial condition, it can be stated as: and in its final condition: P1V1 = k P2V2 = k T1 T2 We will cross multiply the initial and final conditions and will result into steps like this: P1V1 =P2V2 = P1V1 T2=P2 V2 T1 T1 T2

P=Pressure T=Absolute Temperature V=Volume k=Constant

Examples: The initial volume of a gas is 250 mL at 296 K and 700 mm Hg, what is the final volume if the temperature increased to 326 K and the pressure also increased to 800 mm Hg? Given: V1=250 mL V2=? T1=296 K T2=326 K P1=700 mm Hg P2=800 mm Hg P1V1 T2= P2 V2 T1 V2= P1V1 T2 P2T1 V2= (700 mm Hg)(250 mL)(326 K) (800 mm Hg)(296 K) V2= 240 mL The value of initial conditions are: volume is 200 mL, pressure is 2.00 atm, temperature is 300 K, while the final condition values are: volume decreased to 150 mL, temperature also decreased to 285 K, find the final condition of the pressure. GIVEN: V1=200 mL V2=150 mL T1=300 K T2=285 K P1=2.00 atm P2=? P1V1 T2= P2 V2 T1 P2= P1V1 T2 V2T1 P2= (2.00 atm)(200 mL)(285 K) (150 mL)(300 K)

P2= 3 atm

These will be likely the diagrams of Combined Gas Law: