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Hopefully the title is comprehensive enough.

But I am wondering, does it make a difference if you take a powder and mix it with an aqueous solution or take a solution with the very same chemical formula as the powder and mix it with the same aqueous solution?

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Short answer is yes. A lot of times you are trying to control the exothermicity of a reaction by doing a slow addition. This is kind of hard with a powder, and if you dissolve it in a lot of solvent, you can add it slower than you would be able to with a powder.

Without the slow addition, the temperature may increase and decrease your yield or selectivity.

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  • $\begingroup$ Wouldn't the reaction go quicker with the aqueous solution? Because the chemical is already dissolved and the ions floating around? $\endgroup$ – javanewbie Dec 7 '16 at 6:55
  • $\begingroup$ (1) You can add the aqueous solution much more slowly. (2) The aqueous solution is significantly diluted over the solid. So, not necessarily. It is possible and would depend on the reaction. $\endgroup$ – Zhe Dec 7 '16 at 13:39

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