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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

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Abstract Volume 19 (2014) pp 182-186

Use of WolframAlpha in Equilibrium Calculations

David A. Cleary

Department of Chemistry, Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA99258, cleary@gonzaga.edu
Received February 25, 2014. Accepted May 13, 2014.

Published: 6 June 2014

Abstract. A quantitative treatment of chemical equilibrium is presented where the mathematical manipulations and corresponding graphs are processed with the on-line program WolframAlpha. The power, flexibility, and ease of use of WolframAlpha are demonstrated. No coding skills are required, and the program accepts a variety of input styles. The particular equilibrium featured, the ammonia equilibrium, provides a quantitative demonstration of Le Châtelier’s principle, the law of mass action, and the Gibbs free energy of mixing.

Key Words: Computers in Chemistry; physical chemistry; equilibrium

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail: cleary@gonzaga.edu)

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