Electrode composition

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Izzy Ick 4B
Posts: 20
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2015 3:00 am

Electrode composition

Postby Izzy Ick 4B » Tue Feb 02, 2016 12:14 am

Besides copper, what are other common metals electrodes can be made of?
This would be helpful to know when we need to use platinum/graphite in a cell diagram.

Ilana Golub 1A
Posts: 33
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2015 3:00 am

Re: Electrode composition

Postby Ilana Golub 1A » Tue Feb 02, 2016 12:25 am

I am slightly confused by your question, but I will try to answer it accordingly. The electrode is by definition "a conductor through which electricity enters or leaves an object, substance, or region." Essentially, it represents the solid metal present in both the anode and cathode side of the cell. (imagine the image of the cell diagram drawn in class!)

So, if a metal is present in the redox reactions, the electrode by default is that metal. However, if a metal is not present (i.e. if the reaction occurs only between gaseous or aqueous compounds) then platinum or graphite may be used as electrodes. Platinum and graphite are unreactive--hence their presence in the cell makes no difference to the overall reaction! It simply acts as a conductor of electrons from the anode to the cathode.

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