Urea, CO(NH2)2(s), is an important molecule. Our bodies convert the nitrogen from metabolizing proteins in urea which is less toxic than ammonia and can be stored in the kidneys until released. (Fish, on the other hand, release ammonia directly into water through their gills.) Urea was the first “biological” compound to be synthesized entirely from inorganic compounds. Before then, biological processes were thought to require a “vital force” that only existed in living systems.
Industrial synthesis of urea generally follows the Bosch–Meiser process. A balanced chemical equation for the overall reaction is given below.
2NH3(l) + CO2(g) → (NH2)2CO(s) + H2O(l)
Determine ΔH°rxn for the above reaction.
Is this reaction endothermic or exothermic?
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