Problem: Acetone is one of the most important solvents in organic chemistry, used to dissolve everything from fats and waxes to airplane glue and nail polish. At high temperatures, it decomposes in a first-order process to methane and ketene (CH2=C=O). At 600˚C, the rate constant is 8.7 x 10−3 s−1. How long does it take for 90.% of a sample of acetone to decompose?

FREE Expert Solution

We’re being asked to determine the time it would take for 90.% of a sample of acetone to decompose. Since no concentration is given, we can use the given percentages in place of concentration.


The integrated rate law for a first-order reaction is as follows:

ln [A]t=-kt+ln [A]0

where:

[A]t = concentration at time t 
k = rate constant
t = time
[A]0 = initial concentration


If we have [A]0 = 100% at the start of the reaction, this means after time, t,, we have [A]t = 100% – 90% = 10%


We’re given:

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Problem Details

Acetone is one of the most important solvents in organic chemistry, used to dissolve everything from fats and waxes to airplane glue and nail polish. At high temperatures, it decomposes in a first-order process to methane and ketene (CH2=C=O). At 600˚C, the rate constant is 8.7 x 10−3 s−1. How long does it take for 90.% of a sample of acetone to decompose?

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What scientific concept do you need to know in order to solve this problem?

Our tutors have indicated that to solve this problem you will need to apply the Integrated Rate Law concept. You can view video lessons to learn Integrated Rate Law. Or if you need more Integrated Rate Law practice, you can also practice Integrated Rate Law practice problems.

What textbook is this problem found in?

Our data indicates that this problem or a close variation was asked in Chemistry: The Molecular Nature of Matter and Change - Silberberg 8th Edition. You can also practice Chemistry: The Molecular Nature of Matter and Change - Silberberg 8th Edition practice problems.