Chemistry rate law help?Methane gas is a component of natural gas used for home heating and as fuel for "clean" automobiles. The reaction between methane (CH4) and oxygen gas at room temperature...

Chemistry rate law help?

Methane gas is a component of natural gas used for home heating and as fuel for "clean" automobiles. The reaction between methane (CH4) and oxygen gas at room temperature and pressure is so slow that it cannot be measured. Explain.

Asked on by sj-14

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bandmanjoe | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

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Methane gas is a principle component of natural gas and has the chemical formula CH4.  As the simplest hydrocarbon, with one carbon atom and four hydrogen atoms, it readily combusts with oxygen to produce carbon dioxide gas and water vapor.  The reaction looks like this:

CH4 + 2O2 --->  CO2 + 2H2O

I'm not sure what you mean by the statement that the reaction is so slow it "can not be measured".  The combustion of methane gas proceeds quite readily, requiring divisions of seconds to perform to produce the products, carbon dioxide and water vapor. 

Methane gas is usually delivered from drilling sites via pipeline in it's gaseous form, or in a liquefied, colder state.  Methane gas is a colorless, odorless gas used in home heating and as a fuel in vehicles.  An odorant is usually introduced with the gas to help in the detection of gas leaks.

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