The incandescent white of a fireworks display is caused by the reaction of phosphorous with #O_2# to give #P_4O_10#. What is the balanced chemical equation for the reaction?

1 Answer
Aug 21, 2017

Answer:

#4P+5O_2rarrP_4O_10#

Explanation:

Note that phosphorous is #P#.
#therefore P+O_2rarrP_4O_10#

We have 1 P on the LHS, and 4 on the RHS.
We have 2 O on the LHS, and 10 on the RHS.

We cannot balance a chemical equation by adding, subtracting or dividing atoms, the only way to balance is by multiplication.

Let's multiply the LHS by #5# to balance the oxygen.

#P+5O_2rarrP_4O_10#

Now let's multiply the phosphorus on the LHS by #4#.

#4P+5O_2rarrP_4O_10#