What is activation energy for a chemical reaction?
All molecules have certain minimum amount of energy. These energy can be in the form of kinetic or potential energy. These energy can be used to undergo a chemical reaction when molecules collide. However, when the molecules are moving fast enough with a proper collision orientation,so that the kinetic energy is greater than the minimum energy barrier, then a reaction occurs. The minimum energy is required for a chemical reaction to occur is called the activation energy, Ea.
Thus, Activation energy is defined as the energy barrier for a chemical reaction which must be overcome for the reactants to be converted into product.
From Arrhenius equation, we can calculated the Activation energy for a reaction:
E = A e-Ea/RT
Where, Ea = activation energy of a reaction
R= Gas constant
T= Temperature in kelvin(K)
A = Frequency factor.