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What is the purpose of Haber's process? Name the gaseous inputs in the Haber process and state the ratio by volume in which the gases are mixed. What is done to increase the rate of the reaction in Haber process? Give two different ways by which the product can be separated from the reactants.

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Solution

Haber's process is used for the industrial production of ammonia. The gaseous inputs to this process are dry nitrogen and dry hydrogen in 1:3 ratio by volume.
The rate of reaction in Haber's process can be increased by:
  1. Carrying out the process at a temperature between 450oC and 500oC
  2. Carrying out the process at 200-900 atmospheric pressure.
  3. Using finely divided iron as a catalyst and molybdenum as a promoter
After the process, ammonia can be liquified by cooling, while nitrogen and hydrogen cannot be. As a result, the gases emerging from the catalyst chamber are cooled in a condenser. Further, the inlet gases are passed through a soda lime tower to ensure the absorption of hydrogen sulphide, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide that may lead to poisoning of the catalyst.

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