Definition of Carbonation
It is the process of dissolving carbon dioxide into water which is done with pressure being applied or it can be done naturally.
Equilibrium in Carbonated Drinks
In the image above (fig1), explains the process of adding carbon dioxide (c02) into the water. It starts by having the carbon dioxide in the cylinder pass through the valve and into a nozzle of the water bottle. The carbon dioxide bubbles began to rise to the surface causing some of it to dissolve on its way up. The undissolved carbon dioxide begins to escape from the surface of the water and turns into a gas that occupies the remaining space above the water (fig2). Eventually after all this equilibrium is then established between the rates at which carbon dioxide dissolves in water and at the rate which undissloved carbon dioxide rises to the surface.
Le Chatelier’s Principal applied to carbonated soft drinks
Le Chatelier’s principle states that “any change in a system at equilibrium results in a shift of the equilibrium in the direction which minimizes the change” (Clark 2012).The equation below will demonstrate how Le Chatelier’s principle can be applied to carbonation.
CO2(g)+H2O(l) <–> H2CO3(aq)+42.1 kJ
Temperature can affect the equilibrium of any reaction including carbonated soft drinks. The reaction above is exothermic since there is a higher temperature it will cause the amount of products to increase. Therefore in order to achieve equilibrium in this reaction the amount of products will need to shift to the reactant side so that it is at equilibrium. For this reaction more CO2(g) and H2O(l) will be produced. With more amount of H2CO3(aq) it will result in more product created and Le Chatelier principle states that with an increased amount of products it will shift to the reactant side so that a new equilibrium is formed.