Two Final Thoughts About Equilibrium Chemistry
We have reviewed and extended our understanding of equilibrium chemistry. We also have developed several tools for evaluating the composition of a system at equilibrium. These tools differ in how accurately they allow us to answer questions involving equilibrium chemistry. They also differ in their ease of use. An important part of having several tools available to you is knowing when to use them. If you need to know whether a reaction is favorable, or the approximate pH of a solution, a ladder diagram may be sufficient to meet your needs. On the other hand, if you require an accurate estimate of a compoundâ€™s solubility, a rigorous cal- culation using the systematic approach and activity coefficients is necessary.
Finally, a consideration of equilibrium chemistry can only help us decide what reactions are favorable. Knowing that a reaction is favorable does not guarantee that the reaction will occur. How fast a reaction approaches its equilibrium position does not depend on the magnitude of the equilibrium constant.