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Chemistry LibreTexts

7: Chemical Reactions

  • Page ID
    48607
  • A chemical reaction is a process that leads to the transformation of one set of chemical substances to another. Chemical reactions encompass changes that only involve the positions of electrons in the forming and breaking of chemical bonds between atoms, with no change to the nuclei (no change to the elements present), and can often be described by a chemical equation.

    • 7.1: Grade School Volcanoes, Automobiles, and Laundry Detergents
    • 7.2: Evidence of a Chemical Reaction
      In a chemical change, new substances are formed. In order for this to occur, the chemical bonds of the substances break, and the atoms that compose them separate and rearrange themselves into new substances with new chemical bonds. When this process occurs, we call it a chemical reaction. A chemical reaction is the process in which one or more substances are changed into one or more new substances.
    • 7.3: The Chemical Equation
      A chemical reaction is the process in which one or more substances are changed into one or more new substances. Chemical reactions are represented by chemical equations. Chemical equations have reactants on the left, an arrow that is read as "yields", and the products on the right.
    • 7.4: How to Write Balanced Chemical Equations
      In chemical reactions, atoms are never created or destroyed. The same atoms that were present in the reactants are present in the products - they are merely reorganized into different arrangements. In a complete chemical equation, the two sides of the equation must be present on the reactant and the product sides of the equation.
    • 7.5: Aqueous Solutions and Solubility: Compounds Dissolved in Water
      When ionic compounds dissolve in water, the ions in the solid separate and disperse uniformly throughout the solution because water molecules surround and solvate the ions, reducing the strong electrostatic forces between them. This process represents a physical change known as dissociation. Under most conditions, ionic compounds will dissociate nearly completely when dissolved, and so they are classified as strong electrolytes.
    • 7.6: Precipitation Reactions: Reactions in Aqueous Solution That Form a Solid
      A precipitation reaction is a reaction that yields an insoluble product—a precipitate—when two solutions are mixed. Thus precipitation reactions are a subclass of exchange reactions that occur between ionic compounds when one of the products is insoluble. Because both components of each compound change partners, such reactions are sometimes called double-displacement reactions.
    • 7.7: Writing Chemical Equations for Reactions in Solution: Molecular, Complete Ionic, and Net Ionic Equations
      Precipitation is a process in which a solute separates from a supersaturated solution. In a chemical laboratory it usually refers to a solid crystallizing from a liquid solution, but in weather reports it applies to liquid or solid water separating from supersaturated air.
    • 7.8: Acid–Base and Gas Evolution Reactions
      The Arrhenius definition of an acid is a substance that increases the amount of H+ in an aqueous solution. The Arrhenius definition of a base is a substance that increases the amount of OH− in an aqueous solution. Neutralization is the reaction of an acid and a base, which forms water and a salt. Net ionic equations for neutralization reactions may include solid acids, solid bases, solid salts, and water.
    • 7.9: Oxidation–Reduction Reactions
      An oxidation-reduction reaction is a reaction that involves the full or partial transfer of electrons from one reactant to another. Oxidation is the full or partial loss of electrons or the gain of oxygen. Reduction is the full or partial gain of electrons or the loss of oxygen. A redox reaction is another term for an oxidation-reduction reaction.
    • 7.10: Classifying Chemical Reactions
      Chemical reactions are classified into types to help us analyze them and also to help us predict what the products of the reaction will be. The five major types of chemical reactions are synthesis, decomposition, single replacement, double replacement, and combustion.
    • 7.11: The Activity Series
      Metals and halogens are ranked according to their ability to displace other metals or halogens below them in the series. The activity series is a list of elements in decreasing order of their reactivity. Since metals replace other metals, while nonmetals replace other nonmetals, they each have a separate activity series.