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QUESTION

# What is the balanced equation for the chemical reaction Mg3N2+2H2O -&gt; Mg(OH)2+NH3?

The balanced chemical equation for the reaction of Magnesium Nitride Mg_3N_2 with water H_2O to produce Magnesium Hydroxide Mg(OH)_2 and Ammonia gas NH_3 is

Mg_3N_2 + 6H_2O => 3Mg(OH)_2 + 2NH_3

If we start with this equation: Mg_3N_2 + 2H_2O => Mg(OH)_2 + NH_3

Initially we can tell that the amount of Magnesium (Mg), Nitrogen (N), Oxygen (O), and Hydrogen (H) is not even on both sides.

It is easiest to start by balancing an element present in only one reactant and one product.

Since the amount of Magnesium must be equal and there is only one reactant with Magnesium (Magnesium Nitride Mg_3N_2) and one product with Magnesium (Magnesium Hydroxide Mg(OH)_2), we know there will always be 3 Mg(OH)_2 for every Mg_3N_2.

Mg_3N_2 + 2H_2O => 3Mg(OH)_2 + NH_3

At this point the Mg is balanced but Oxygen is still unbalanced.

There are 2 atoms of O on the reactant side and 6 on the product side.

Again, since only one reactant has O and one product has O, we know that for every Mg(OH)_2 there must be 2 H_2O.

Since we have 3Mg(OH)_2 there must be 6H_2O.

Mg_3N_2 + 6H_2O => 3Mg(OH)_2 + NH_3

Mg and O are now balanced.

Nitrogen is still unbalanced and is also only in one term on each side.

There are 2 atoms of N on the reactant side and 1 atom of N on the product side.

By doubling the amount of Ammonia (NH_3) on the product side this can be brought into balance.

Mg_3N_2 + 6H_2O => 3Mg(OH)_2 + 2NH_3

And this also balances the Hydrogen on both sides, so we are done.

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