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How do you calculate the Cell potential of a cathode/anode when you're given an overall reaction and are breaking it down into half reactions so that you can know which direction to write the spontaneous reaction? or should we assume that the direction of the overall reaction is already spontaneous and not have to calculate the cell potential of each electrode? Because I noticed in the solutions manual for 6L, they always write the cell potential of the cathode and anode, but they don't show the way that it was found; is it just given information from a table or should we calculate it using some equation?
The cell potential of the cathode and anode half reactions are usually found in a table unless you have closely related elements in which case you would calculate the cell potential. But otherwise, they are usually given and you would just have to determine which half reaction is oxidation and reduction.
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