posted by Dan on .
What is Dalton's law of partial pressures? Explain how this law relates to the fact that mountain climbers must carry tanks of oxygen when scaling high peaks.
Ptotal = sum of partial pressures of each gas.
Dalton's Law states that the total pressure of a system is equal to the partial pressure of all the mixed gases. The equation looks like this.
Ptotal = P1 + P2 + P3 + ...
Assume that the temperature and volume is constant.
When going to high altitudes, the pressure in a mountain climber's body is reduced. This is very dangerous to the climber - it can cause brain deterioration, among with other things. Therefore, the climber must carry a tank of oxygen with him that will increase the amount of oxygen he is getting, increasing the partial pressure of the oxygen, which in turn increases the partial pressure of the gas he is inhaling.