# What's the actual or official definition of activation energy? [duplicate]

In some sources I have seen that activation energy is the minimum energy required to cause a reaction. This implies that activation energy doesn't change with temperature (not considering very high changes). In other sources it is the difference between the energy required to cause the reaction & the energy of the reactants. This implies that activation energy is temperature dependent since the energy of the reactants change with temperature. So which is correct? Also another source (khan academy's guardian chemist) says that "The official definition of activation energy is a bit complicated and involves some calculus."

## marked as duplicate by matt_black, Todd Minehardt, Mithoron, Tyberius, Jon CusterFeb 5 '18 at 19:18

• The FREE ENERGY ($\Delta$ G) and ACTIVATION ENERGY both are different.The FREE ENERGY change is of total reaction but ACTIVATION ENERGY is only regarding min energy which is independent of temperature. Don't combine them without any logic.. Think twice before adding comments and downvoting. – Soumik Das Feb 5 '18 at 19:42
• Actually both exist: there is the free energy of reaction ($\Delta G$) and also the free energy of activation ($\Delta G ^{\ddagger}$). – diogom Feb 5 '18 at 23:24