Why is Adsorption Always Exothermic? - Chemistry

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Why is adsorption always exothermic?

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ΔH is always negative because during adsorption, the surface energy decreases in the form of heat. Also, ΔS is negative because when a gas is adsorbed on a solid surface, its movement is restricted; this leads to a decrease in the entropy of the gas. Now, for a process to be spontaneous, ΔG should be negative.


Because ΔS is negative, TΔS becomes positive. So, ΔH has to be highly negative for the spontaneous process to make ΔG negative. Hence, adsorption is always exothermic

Concept: Types of Adsorption
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2013-2014 (March) All India Set 2

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