Products of Electrolysis

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Michael Torres 4I
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Joined: Thu May 10, 2018 3:00 am
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Products of Electrolysis

Postby Michael Torres 4I » Sun Mar 03, 2019 6:52 pm

Some of the self test questions in the seventh edition ask for the products of electrolysis of certain compounds. Can some explain how one would find the products of electrolysis of any compound? Thank you.

Te Jung Yang 4K
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:18 am

Re: Products of Electrolysis

Postby Te Jung Yang 4K » Sun Mar 03, 2019 10:38 pm

To answer your question, it would be best if you could offer some examples of compounds that you would like to know the products of after electrolysis. But, generally, the compound in question will be an ionic compound, in which case, the compound will dissociate into its constituent ions. The anion will go to the anode for oxidation (via electrostatics), forming an oxidized form of itself. The cation will be attracted to the cathode for reduction (via electrostatics) , forming a reduced form of itself.

Of course, there are many more subtleties in play, such as the fact that you need to take into account factors like the standard reduction potentials and the competition of the constituent ions with the OH- and H3O+ already present in the solution, but you don't need to know that for the purposes of this class.

Also note that the above explanation is a general case.

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