• Potential energy diagrams for endothermic and exothermic reactions are described.
  • The activation energy (Ea) of a reaction is the barrier that must be overcome for the reactants to be able to become products.
  • The total potential energy of the system increases for the endothermic reaction as the system absorbs energy from the surroundings.
  • The potential energy decreases for the exothermics as the systems releases energy to the surroundings, as shown in the potential energy diagrams.
  • The energy changes that occur during a chemical reaction can be shown in a diagram called a potential energy diagram, or reaction progress curve.
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