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What is the half-life of a reaction and how does it relate to the rate constant?

The half-life of a reaction is the time taken for half of the reactants to be consumed. It is related to the rate constant as they both describe the speed of the reaction.

The rate constant is a measure of how fast a reaction occurs. It is represented by the symbol k and is specific to each reaction. The half-life of a reaction is related to the rate constant by the following equation: t1/2 = ln(2)/k. This means that the half-life is inversely proportional to the rate constant. A larger rate constant means a shorter half-life, and vice versa.

The half-life is an important parameter in chemical kinetics as it allows us to predict how long it will take for a reaction to reach completion. For example, if the half-life of a reaction is 10 minutes, then after 10 minutes, half of the reactants will have been consumed. After another 10 minutes, half of the remaining reactants will have been consumed, and so on. This information can be used to optimise reaction conditions and to design chemical processes.

In summary, the half-life of a reaction is the time taken for half of the reactants to be consumed, and it is related to the rate constant by an inverse relationship. Understanding the half-life of a reaction is important for predicting reaction completion and for designing chemical processes.

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