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Chemistry Yield and Its Different Types

Alan Walker | July 10, 2021

Table of contents

    What is Yield

    The yield can simply be called as the amount of the product formed as a result of a chemical reaction.

    However, the exact definition of yield can be stated as, measurement of the amount of moles of product produced by a chemical reaction, generally given as a percentage by reference to the reactant consumed.

    In organic and inorganic chemical synthesis processes, yield is one of the key criteria for scientists.

    Therefore, in chemistry reaction yield is the quantity of the product produced. The reaction yield in mass or volume can be measured.

    Regardless of how many times the same reaction has been done, it is crucial to determine the amount every time since the circumstances can vary how much the product is created.

    The yield of a reaction is considered good if more product is being produced.

    When it is determined that certain conditions yield better than others, then it should be done under those conditions if the reaction is repeated.

    Related: Learn what is moles to grams conversion and how do you calculate molecular weight of an element or substance.

    Types of Yield

    The yield of a reaction can be calculated depending upon the various factors and these yield calculations are classified as three different types of yields.

    Let’s consider these different types of reaction yields as given under:

    1. Theoretical Yield

      The quantity of product, as computed using a stoichiometry of a suitable balanced chemical equation, and is generated by a reaction under given conditions is termed the theoretical yield.

      Theoretical yield is determined by assuming that the reaction completes and it depends upon the quantity of limiting reactants.

      Theoretical yield calculator helps you finding theoretical yield with few clicks easily online.

    2. Actual Yield

      While practically performing the reaction, the amount of product obtained is known as actual yield, and typically for a number of reasons is less than the theoretical yield.

      Therefore, actual yield is the amount of a certain pure product produced in a particular reaction. While, some reactions, accompanied by side reactions that create additional products, are intrinsically inefficient.

    3. Percent Yield

      During chemical reactions, some goods are hard to gather without loss, thus the actual yield is reduced by less than a complete recovery.

      The extent to which a reaction’s theoretical yield is obtained is sometimes represented as a percentage return. The percent yield formula is

      Percent Yield = (Actual Yield/Theoretical Yield) * 100

      As it’s a ratio among two quantities, the percent yield thus represents the percentage of the product obtained as a result of a chemical reaction.

      Find the full percent yield tutorial for learning more.

      Percentage yield calculator makes it easy for you to calculate percent yield easily online without spending too much time doing manual calculations.

    Related: Learn what is half life in chemistry and how to calculate half life of a chemical reaction.

    How to Increase Yield

    The yield of a reaction can effectively be increased by following Le Chatelier’s principle, according to which,

    A change in one of the variables that describe a system at equilibrium produces a shift in the position of the equilibrium that counteracts the effect of this change.

    By changing certain conditions of either the environment or reactants to make them favorable for reactants the yield of a reaction can be increased.

    The variables that causes increase in reaction yield includes the following:

    An endothermic process increases the temperature for increasing yield. An endothermic process is one in which energy is absorbed during the reaction. When energy is being added to a reaction, it increases the likelihood of producing a product.

    An exothermic process brings the temperature down to a safe level. An exothermic process releases energy as a byproduct. If you eliminate the energy from the equation, the product-forming process is favored.

    By increasing the pressure in a gaseous system when the product side has fewer moles than the system as a whole. In this case, the reaction is directed toward increasing the products.

    Make an aqueous solution more concentrated by increasing the concentration of a reactant. It appears that the chemical reaction will be increasing the quantity of products formed more than usual.

    Related: Chemistry mainly deals with the chemical equations and chemical reactions. Balancing chemical equation calculator is an online tool which can save you from doing manual calculations. You can use this calculaltor to get instant results and balance chemical equation on run time.

    Why 100% Yield Can’t Be Achieved in Reversible Reactions

    Reversible reactions are the chemical reactions that flow in both ways i.e. forward as well as backwards.

    These reactions after completing forward reaction can be easily reversed. During reversible reactions, the actual yield of a reaction is always recorded less than the theoretical yield.

    The lesser product outcome in actual yield in comparison to theoretical yield consequently decreases the percentage yield calculations. Thus, the 100% percentage yield is not achieved during the reaction.

    This happens owing to different factors involved while performing actual reaction. That includes the quantity of limiting reactants that determines the actual yield of a reaction.

    Moreover, several different side reactions also occur along with the main reaction which lessens the reactants quantity.

    The loss or spill of reacting ingredients is another common factor that contributes to why we can’t achieve 100% yield during reversible reactions.

    Related: Find one of the best online mole fraction calculator.

    Why Actual Yield is less than Theoretical Yield?

    In practice, the actual yield is generally lower than the theoretical yield as a small number of reactions are completed or because not all products are collected. There are many reasons that result in the actual for instance, some product is lost if the precipitate does not entirely fall out of solution during recovery.

    Some products could stay on the filter or filter paper if it makes its way through the mesh and washes away. Even though the product is insoluble in the solvent, some may be lost if it is rinsed.

    It's possible to receive actual yield in a quantity exceeding the theoretical yield. This happens when there is still solvent in the product (partial drying) or when the product is weighed incorrectly, or because an uncounted component acts as a catalyst resulting in the production of a product.

    Or sometimes the product is impure, including another chemical in addition to the solvent, which increases yield.

    If you filter the solution through filter paper, some product may remain on the filter or make its way through the mesh and wash away. If you rinse the product, a small amount of it may be lost from dissolving in the solvent, even if the product is insoluble in that solvent.

    Related: Calculatored provide science calculators, formulas and tutorial so that you could learn and practice. Do check those!

    Significance of Reaction Yields

    As a result, it therefore becomes relevant to ask why yield calculations are so critical? Yield calculations, whether theoretical, percent or actual, all have a considerable place in stoichiometry.

    For instance, without assuming theoretical yield you can’t predict the results, or assume what quantity of product could be achieved. Percentage yield calculation is extremely essential in the production of many items. A lot of work and money is invested in enhancing the chemical’s percentage yield.

    Moreover, the low yield is a very costly waste of chemicals and reactants, particularly when many steps are required to synthesize complex compounds. Therefore, yield would have to be calculated prior to conducting reactions, without taking into consideration reactions yield the reaction efficiency cannot be accessed.

    There are a lot of other online tools, formulas and tutorials across multiple categories on this website which you can find. These tools will help you learning and practice. Happy Learning & Practice!