One of the most subtle aspects of chemistry is in understanding the factors which make a chemical reaction favorable or unfavorable. In this module, we pursue this understanding by observing what makes a process “spontaneous,” and we develop the concept of entropy as a predictive tool for spontaneity. We observe the second law of thermodynamics, and from this, we develop a model for predicting chemical equilibrium based on a new quantity called the “free energy.” We conclude by relating the free energy to the equilibrium constant observed in a previous module, culminating in one of the most beautiful theories in all of science.

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