Oxidization Question  [ENDORSED]

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Sophia Kim 1C
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Oxidization Question

Postby Sophia Kim 1C » Wed Feb 21, 2018 2:14 am

In part A of 14.5 the half reaction is O3 (g) -> O2(g) and it states that this is being reduced. If the oxidation number is both 0 how can you know if it is being reduced or oxidized?

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Re: Oxidization Question  [ENDORSED]

Postby Chem_Mod » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:07 am

O3 and O2 both have charges of zero but the bookkeeping of assigning oxidation numbers would imply that oxidizing O2 yields O3 and reducing O3 yields O2. You do not have to solve for the exact oxidation numbers of the oxygens in both forms, but you should know that the term "oxidation" can mean adding oxygens to a molecule. This is why the half-reaction O3(g) --> O2(g) is a reduction.

Oxidation numbers are not the same thing as charges. Oxidation numbers are simply a bookkeeping method to keep track of electron transfer in redox reactions.

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