• You are rather unclear as to what you are saying here. Are you adding HCl to the ZnSO4 or to just zinc? If you are adding it to the ZnSO4, then you will have to account for all of the ions in your equation. There is another thing here. Did you actually do this or is this just a problem out of a textbook? If you actually did this, then did you note the reaction producing a gas? If not, then H2 is not one of the products of the reaction. Personally, I doubt that you would get hydrogen gas being given off by the reaction between ZnSO4 + HCl because the Zn is already in a combined state. I would expect that at most all that you would get is a solution (I assume that all of this is going on in an aqueous solution) of Zn, SO4, H, and Cl ions. If there is any exchange going on with this one it would be Zn swapping places with H as it did in the first reaction. I could be wrong on this though. I don't recall actually doing either of these in my chemistry classes. So, I am not entirely sure.
  • Hi, I believe you're talking about the catalytic properties of Cu in a reaction between Zn and HCl. What happens is in a normal situation of Zn being added to HCl: Zn + 2HCl -> ZnCl2 + H2 What's interesting is what happens when CuSO4 is added to the equation. Based on the reactivity series, Zn > H+ > Cu. When a small quantity of CuSO4 (aq) is added, to the solution, a displacement reaction occurs: Cu2+ (aq) + Zn (s) --> Cu (s) + Zn2+ (aq) Based on observations, you would see that that the blue solution immediately turns colourless, and your zinc becomes slightly darker. With Cu (s) and Zn (s) being 'connected' and remaining in HCl (aq), Cu being less reactive than Zn, becomes a cathode in an electrolytic reaction, and the H+ ions get reduced to H2 (g) Anode (at Cu): 2H+ (aq) + 2e- --> H2 (g) Cathode (at Zn): Zn (s) - 2e- --> Zn2+ (aq) The rate of reaction would be faster as well due to the difference in overpotentials. So while one may consider Cu a catalyst in this reaction, since Cu doesn't revert to Cu2+, and because of it, the max amount of H2 (g) produced is reduced.

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