Will increasing the activation energy increase or decrease the rate of a reaction?

1 Answer

Answer:

Decrease.

Explanation:

From the Arrhenius equation the activation energy (#E_a#) is exponentially inversely proportional to the rate constant (#k#). Because the exponent has a negative sign, increasing the numeric value decreases the resulting exponential term.

#k = Acdot"exp"(-(E_a)/(RT))#, #" "#where #e^x -= "exp"(x)#

Higher activation energies decrease the rate of a reaction. That is the main reason catalysts are so important in the chemical industry. Catalysts reduce the activation energy, allowing for more effective and efficient processes.