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Problem: Imagine you mix 16.05 g of methane (CH4) gas and 96.00 g of oxygen (O2) gas and then ignite the mixture. After a bright flash and a loud bang, some water droplets form on the inside of the reaction vessel.Identify the theoretical yields.

FREE Expert Solution

We’re being asked to calculate the theoretical yields of the combustion reaction of methane (CH4) gas


For this problem, we need to do the following steps:

Step 1: Write and balance a chemical equation for the given reaction.

Step 2: Determine the limiting reactant and calculate the mass of CO2 formed.

Step 3: Calculate the mass of H2O formed.



Step 1: Write and balance a chemical equation for the given reaction.

 From the problem, the given combustion reaction is:

CH4 + O2 → CO2 + H2O


This equation is not yet balanced. To balance it, we have to make sure that the number of elements on both sides is equal.


Balance C: We have 1 C on the reactant side and 1 C on the product side – C is balanced


Balance H: We have 4 H on the reactant side and 2 H on the product side – add a coefficient of 2 to H2O:

CH4 + O2 → CO22 H2O


Balance O: We have 2 O on the reactant side and 2+2 = 4 O on the product side – add a coefficient of 2 to O2

CH4 + O2 → CO22 H2O


Now that we have a balanced equation, we can proceed with the problem.


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Problem Details

Imagine you mix 16.05 g of methane (CH4) gas and 96.00 g of oxygen (O2) gas and then ignite the mixture. After a bright flash and a loud bang, some water droplets form on the inside of the reaction vessel.

Identify the theoretical yields.

Frequently Asked Questions

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 Limiting Reagent concept. If you need more Limiting Reagent practice, you can also practice Limiting Reagent practice problems.