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Name: Anirudh
Status: student
Grade: 9-12
Location: NY
Country: India
Date: Winter 2011-2012


Question:
We were synthesizing Ammonia gas using HCl acid, as a part of the class experiment, for studying its chemical properties and that's when it hit me! Our body produces gases and acids like these (eg: Urea) during various metabolic process, which seems impossible because these gases & acids require very high temperatures (~200'C) for their synthesis and the maximum our body can do is 37'C. So how a human body is able to produce gasses and acids like Ammonia, Hydrogen Sulfide, HCl and others at body temperature?



Replies:
It would help to know the reaction you are using to synthesize ammonia gas (NH3), a base, using HCl, an acid. But putting that aside, realize that there are many reactions that have ammonia as a product. Some of these reactions require high temperature, but many other reactions do not require elevated temperature. What I believe you are thinking about is the reaction of formation of a compound, that is, the formation of a compound, in this case NH3, from its constituent elements -- N2 and H2 -- 1/2 N2 + 3/2 H2 = NH3.

Vince Calder



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