We’re asked to write balanced chemical equations for the reaction of (a) N2 and O2 to produce NO and (b) NO an oxygen O2 to produce nitrogen dioxide gas.
Recall that when balancing chemical equations, we have to make sure that the number of elements on both sides is equal with the lowest whole number coefficients.
For each reaction, we need to determine the reactants and the products.
The source of oxygen that drives the internal combustion engine in an automobile is air. Air is a mixture of gases, which are principally N2 (~79%) and O2 (~20%). In the cylinder of an automobile engine, nitrogen can react with oxygen to produce nitric oxide gas, NO. As NO is emitted from the tailpipe of the car, it can react with more oxygen to produce nitrogen dioxide gas.
Write balanced chemical equations for both reactions.
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