The reaction rate or rate of reaction for a reactant or product in a particular reaction is intuitively defined as how fast a reaction takes place. For example, the oxidation of iron under the atmosphere is a slow reaction which can take many years, but the combustion of butane in a fire is a reaction that takes place in fractions of a second.
Factors influencing rate of reaction:
The nature of the reaction: Some reactions are naturally faster than others. The number of reacting species, their physical state (the particles that form solids move much more slowly than those of gases or those in solution), the complexity of the reaction and other factors can influence greatly the rate of a reaction.
Concentration: Reaction rate increases with concentration, as described by the rate law and explained by collision theory. As reactant concentration increases, the frequency of collision increases.
Pressure: The rate of gaseous reactions increases with pressure, which is, in fact, equivalent to an increase in concentration of the gas. For condensed-phase reactions, the pressure dependence is weak.
Order: The order of the reaction controls how the reactant concentration (or pressure) affects reaction rate.
Temperature: Usually conducting a reaction at a higher temperature delivers more energy into the system and increases the reaction rate by causing more collisions between particles, as explained by collision theory. However, the main reason that temperature increases the rate of reaction is that more of the colliding particles will have the necessary activation energy resulting in more successful collisions (when bonds are formed between reactants). The influence of temperature is described by the Arrhenius equation. As a rule of thumb, reaction rates for many reactions double for every 10 degrees Celsius increase in temperature, though the effect of temperature may be very much larger or smaller than this.
For example, coal burns in a fireplace in the presence of oxygen but it doesn't when it is stored at room temperature. The reaction is spontaneous at low and high temperatures but at room temperature its rate is so slow that it is negligible. The increase in temperature, as created by a match, allows the reaction to start and then it heats itself, because it is exothermic. That is valid for many other fuels, such as methane, butane, hydrogen
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