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QUESTION

What do endothermic and exothermic mean?

Endothermic means absorbs heat. Exothermic means releases heat.

Think of it this way.

"EX"othermic means "EX"it. If the heat is "EX"iting, then it is an "EX"othermic reaction.

This means that the system goes to a lower energy level.

The burning of hydrogen gas is an exothermic reaction.

"2H"_2("g") +" O"_2("g") → "2H"_2"O"("g") + "heat"

"EN"dothermic means "EN"ter. If the heat is "EN"tering, then it is an "EN"dothermic reaction.

This means that the system goes to a higher energy level.

The decomposition of calcium carbonate into calcium oxide and carbon dioxide is an endothermic reaction.

"CaCO"_3("s") + "heat" → "CaO"("s") + "CO"_2"(g")

The following video shows some more exothermic and endothermic processes.