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enthalpy Symbol H. A thermodynamic property of a system defined by H = U + pV, where H is the enthalpy, U is the internal energy of the system, p its pressure, and V its volume. In a chemical reaction carried out in the atmosphere the pressure remains constant and the enthalpy of reaction, ΔH, is equal to ΔU + pΔV. For an exothermic reaction ΔH is taken to be negative.
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