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The Haber Process
The Haber Process is an industrial process used to produce ammonia from
hydrogen and nitrogen gases.
N2(g)+3H2(g) 2NH3(g) =-92 kJ mol-1
Materials: nitrogen (from air), hydrogen (from methane)
Ratio: N:H = 1:3
Pressure: 200 atmospheres
The nitrogen and hydrogen are mixed together and are put into a reaction
The temperature is at 450°c as a compromise because although high
temperatures make the equilibrium move to the left, a lower temperature
would be too slow to be economically practical.
The pressure is high to encourage the equilibrium to move to the right without
it being too expensive to build the equipment.
An iron catalyst is added to enable the equilibrium to be reached quicker.
Once the equilibrium has been reached, the mixture is cooled down (by
fractional distillation) and the ammonia is separated before the gases are
re-added to the reaction vessel.