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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Chapter 7

ELECTROLYSIS
Electrolysis is the process of using a power supply to force an electric current to
flow through a solution. In this way, non-spontaneous redox reactions can occur.
Electrolysis is used to
apply thin coatings of metals or
produce products that are otherwise difficult to obtain.
Key knowledge
electrolysis of molten liquids and aqueous solutions using different electrodes
general operating principles of commercial electrolytic cells
the comparison of electrolytic ells and galvanic cells
use of the electrochemical series to predict products
the application of stoichiometry and Faradays Laws to determine amounts of
product
7.1 What is electrolysis?
Example 1
Two electrodes are placed in a molten
solution
of sodium chloride, NaCl.
From the electrochemical series, no reaction is
expected and none occurs.
Cl2 + 2e 2ClNa+ + e Na

Na+
Cl-

Note: A molten solution of NaCl is formed by heating a large pile of salt in a crucible.
It contains NO water. Represented as NaCl(l)
If however, a power supply is included in the circuit a reaction does occur.
e
-

The power supply pushes electrons to the negative


electrode.
Na+ ions move to the negative electrode, taking
electrons
to form Na atoms.

Na+

Cl- ions move to the positive electrode and


release
electrons to form Cl2 gas.

Cl

2Cl-(l)

Half equations
Na+(l) + e- Na(l)
Cl2(g) + 2eChapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Overall equation
2Na+ (l) + 2Cl-(l) 2Na(l)+ Cl2(g)
Products are sodium metal and chlorine gas, two useful and hard to produce elements.

Electrolysis: Redox reactions that require an external power supply.


Purposes: 1. To obtain products that might be difficult to produce by other means.
2. To electroplate metals onto surfaces.
In electrolysis: The power supply determines the direction of electron flow
Oxidation occurs at the anode; the anode is positive
Reduction occurs at the cathode; the cathode is negative
Only one compartment is needed
A salt bridge is not necessary
Using electrochemical series for prediction of electrolysis.
2Cl- Cl2 + 2e
Na+ + e Na

An electrolysis reaction will occur if

there is an oxidant and a reductant and

the oxidant is lower on the table than the reductant

Example 2
Electrolysis of CaS(l) molten solution
Ca2+ ions move to the negative electrode
S2- ions to the positive.
Half equations
Ca2+(l) + 2e- Ca(l)
S2-(l) S(l) + 2e-

reduction => cathode


oxidation => anode

Ca2+(l) + S2-(l) Ca(l) + S(l)


Products: calcium and sulfur

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Ca2+
S2-

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Question set 1
1. A molten solution of magnesium bromide, MgBr2 is
electrolysed.
Use the template provided to draw this cell showing the
a. direction of electron flow
b. direction of ion movement
c. relevant half equations
d. overall equation
anode: ____________________________________
cathode: ___________________________________
overall: ____________________________________
2. The cells covered so far have been molten solutions. Explain what a molten
solution of copper (II) iodide is.
__________________________________________________________________
3. Fact 1: Lithium can react with bromine to produce electrical energy in a galvanic
cell.
Fact 2. Lithium ions will not react readily with bromide ions to produce
electricity.
a.

Use the electrochemical series to find the half equations for lithium and bromine.
Explain why the reaction between lithium and bromine chlorine is not an
electrolysis reaction.
______________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________

b.

Explain why the reaction between chloride ions and sodium ions will only occur
in an electrolytic cell.
_______________________________________________________________

4.

Fill in the blanks.


In electrolysis, an external ________ ________ is used. Electrons are pushed to
the ________ electrode. When a reaction occurs, oxidation will be at the
_______, which is the ________ electrode. Reduction will occur at the
___________ , which is the ___________ electrode.

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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

5. Electrolysis is conducted on a molten solution of potassium iodide, KI.


Use the electrochemical series to;
a. Copy the two relevant half equations for this electrolysis
______________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
b.

Highlight the species present to show that this solution is suitable for
electrolysis.

c.

Determine the half equations that will occur at the;


Anode:
______________________________
Cathode:

d.

______________________________

Write the overall equation for the reaction occurring and identify the products
formed.
Overall equation: ___________________________________________
Products formed: ___________________________________________

7.2

Electrolysis of Aqueous Solutions

The presence of water offers extra possible reactions. The E0 Table is used to help
predict the eventual reactions.
Procedure
1. Identify all possible reactants, including water
2. Write the relevant half equations in order of position on E0 scale,
including
O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e 2H2O(l)
1.23 V
2H2O(l) + 2e H2(g) + 2OH-(aq)
-0.83 V
3. The strongest oxidant will react with the strongest reductant.
Example 1: Electrolysis of NaCl(aq), a salt water aqueous solution.
Species present: Na+, Cl- and H2O
Relevant half equations
Cl2 + 2e- 2ClO2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e- 2H2O(l)
2H2O(l) + 2e- H2(g) + 2OH-(aq)
Na+ + e- Na
the strongest oxidant reacts with the strongest reductant
Reverse top half equation
2H2O(l) O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e2H2O(l) + 2e- H2(g) + 2OH-(aq)

oxidation: anode : +ve


reduction: cathode:-ve

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Overall equation
6H2O(l) 2H2(g) + O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4OH-(aq)
or more simply
2H2O(l) 2H2(g) + O2(g)
Products: hydrogen and oxygen gas (not sodium and chlorine )
Example 2: Electrolysis of NiBr2(aq)
Species present: Ni2+, Br- and H2O
Relevant half equations
O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e 2H2O(l)
Br2(l) + 2e 2Br-(aq)
Ni2+ (aq) + 2e Ni(s)
the strongest oxidant reacts with the strongest reductant
2H2O(l) + 2e H2(g) + 2OH (aq)
Reverse top equation
2Br-(aq) Br2(l) + 2e
Ni2+ (aq) + 2e Ni(s)

oxidation: anode : +ve


reduction: cathode:-ve

Overall
2Br-(aq) + Ni2+ (aq) Ni(s) + Br2(l)
Products: nickel and bromine (water does not react this time)

Question set 2
1. Use the template provided to predict the products of electrolysis of the following
two aqueous solutions.
note: if you cannot find a half-equation for a particular species it might be that the species is unreactive

Solution: CuSO4(aq)

Solution: AgNO3(aq)

Species present: ______________

Species present: ______________

Relevant half-equations
___________________________

Relevant half-equations
___________________________

___________________________

___________________________

___________________________

___________________________

___________________________

___________________________

Half equations occurring

Half equations occurring

___________________________

___________________________

___________________________

___________________________

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Overall equation

Overall equation

________________________________

__________________________

Products formed: _______________

Products formed: _______________

7.3 Molten or Aqueous solutions?


Some metals can be obtained cheaply from aqueous solutions while others
require molten solutions. Why the difference? The difference is the reactivity of
the metal concerned.
In the electrolysis of AgNO3(aq), silver metal is obtained. Electrolysis of silver is
simple.
In the electrolysis of NaNO3(aq), no sodium is obtained. Electrolysis of sodium
requires a molten solution.
The reason for the difference is the position of the metal half equation in relation to
water.
O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e- 2H2O(l)
Ag+(aq) +e- Ag(s)
2H2O(l) + 2e- H2(g) + 2OH-(aq)

Ag+ can react with water, but


Na+ will not

Na+(aq) +e- Na(s)


Any metal located under the water half equation at -0.83 volts cannot be obtained
from an aqueous solution.
The water half equation at - 0.83 volts represents the dividing line between easy to
produce metals and difficult to produce metals.

these metals react before water does

- dividing line --water will react with itself before these


metals can react.

O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e 2H2O(l)


Ag+(aq) + e Ag(s)
Cu2+(aq) + 2e Cu(s)
Ni2+(aq) + 2e Ni(s)
2H2O(l) + 2e H2(g) + 2OH-(aq) -0.83 V
Mg2+(aq) + 2e Mg(s)
Li+ (aq) + e Li(s)

All metals placed below the water half equation must be produced through
electrolysis of molten solutions
7.4 Reactive electrodes

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As well as the solutions reacting, metal electrodes can also be possible reactants.
The process for determining the products that will form is still the same
strongest oxidant reacts with the strongest reductant.
Example: electrolysis of aqueous copper sulfate using copper electrodes.
Species present: Cu2+, Cu. SO42-, H2O
Relevant half-equations
O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e 2H2O(l)
Cu(aq) + 2e Cu(s)
strongest oxidant is Cu2+ and strongest reductant is Cu
2H2O(l) + 2e H2(g) + 2OH-(aq)
Reverse top equation
Cu (s) Cu2+(aq) + 2e
Cu2+ (aq) + 2e Cu(s)

oxidation: anode : +ve


reduction: cathode

Products: Copper goes into solution at the positive electrode and is deposited from
the solution at the negative electrode. This is a useful process in industry for refining
impure copper (used as the anode) into pure copper (collected at the cathode).
Question set 3
1.

a. Use half equations to explain why Alcoa in Portland uses molten solution to
obtain aluminium by electrolysis from bauxite, Al2O3.
_____________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________
b.

State two important reasons why the use of molten solutions is a problem.
_____________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________

2. Electrolysis of a solution of zinc sulfate is conducted using copper electrodes. Use


the template below to determine the products that will form.
Solution: ZnSO4(aq) with copper electrodes. Species present: ______________
Relevant half-equations
__________________________________
__________________________________

select the strongest oxidant


and the strongest reductant

__________________________________
__________________________________
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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Reactions occurring
Anode: ______________________________
Cathode: _____________________________
Products: ______________________________

7.5

Electrolysis in industry

Electrolysis is used by many large industries for the manufacture of large scale
production of metals such as aluminium and sodium. For production to be
viable, the principles learnt in this chapter must be applied.
Production of aluminium: Hall cell
Aluminium is mined as bauxite,
Al2O3.
Applying what we have learnt:
a molten solution needs to be
used for aluminium to be
formed
a molten solution requires
high temperatures and high
costs
abundant electrical energy
will be required, especially as aluminium contains Al3+ ions.
there will be environmental considerations associated with transfer of
materials and disposal of waste.

7.5

Faradays Laws

The manufacturers of metals such as aluminium


want to predict how much aluminium they are likely
to produce in any given period. This can easily be done
if
the number of electrons flowing in the circuit, the
electric current, is known.
Consider the NaCl cell shown. The half equation is
+

Na

1 atom of sodium requires


7 atoms of sodium requires
8

Na

1 electron
7 electrons

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Na+
Cl-

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

1200 atoms of sodium requires


1 mole of sodium requires

1200 electrons
1 mole of electrons

The charge on an electron is 1.60 x 10-19 Coulomb and number in a mole is 6.02 1023
Therefore the charge on 1 mole of electrons = 1.6 x 10-19 x 6.023 x 1023 = 96500 C

1 faraday of charge = 96500 C mol-1

Amount of charge is determined using


charge in coulomb

Q = It
current in amp

time in sec

Example 1
Calculate the mass of sodium formed when a current of 5.00 amps runs for 3.00 hours
Procedure
It = Q

n(e) = Q
n(metal) from balanced
96500
equation

mass(metal) = n x M

Q = I x t = 5 x 3 x 60 x 60 = 54000 C
n(e) =

54000
0.560 mol
96500

n(Na) = n(e-) = 0.560 mol


m(Na) = 0.560 23 = 12.9 g
Example 2
Calculate the current required to produce 1.00 kg of magnesium from an electrolytic
cell in 100 minutes
Procedure is the reverse of above
n(metal) = m
M
n(Mg) =

n(e) from balanced Q = n x 96500 I = Q


equation
t

m 1000

41.2 mol
M
24.3

n(e-) = 2 n(Mg) (as Mg2+) = 2 41.2 = 82.4 mol

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Q= n(e-) 96500 = 82.4 96500 = 7.94 106


I=

Q 7.94 x 10 6

1330 amps
t
6000

Question set 4
1. Use the procedure outlined here to calculate the mass of aluminium produced
when a current of 4.20 amps runs through an AlCl3 cell for 24.0 hours
It = Q

n(e) = Q
n(metal) from balanced
96500
equation

mass(metal) = n x M

Q = __________________
n(e) = _______________

half equation for Al: ________________

n(metal) = ____________
mass(metal) = _________
2. Use the above procedure in reverse to calculate time required to produce 22.0 kg
of calcium from a cell where the current is 12.0 amps
n(metal) = m
M
n(metal) =

n(e) from balanced Q = n x 96500 I = Q


equation
t

_____________

half equation for calcium: _____________

n(electrons) = ______________
Q = __________________

=>

t = _____________________

3. An electrolytic cell used for silver plating was operated at a current of 6.00 A for
a period of 2.00 hours. Calculate the mass of silver deposited at the cathode
during this time.
________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________

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Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

4. An electrolytic cell used to produce aluminium operates at a current of 150000 A.


In order to produce 1.00 kg (103 g) of aluminium, calculate:
a. how long the cell must operate;
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
b. the volume of carbon dioxide gas measured at STP, produced at the anodes
_______________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
c.

the mass of carbon consumed at the anodes.

________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________

7.6

Electrolysis in industry

Electrolysis is used by many large industries for the manufacture of large scale
production of metals such as aluminium and sodium. For production to be
viable, the principles learnt in this chapter must be applied.
Production of aluminium: Hall cell
Aluminium is mined as bauxite,
Al2O3.
Applying what we have learnt:
a molten solution needs to be
used for aluminium to be
formed
a molten solution requires
high temperatures and high
costs
abundant electrical energy
will be required, especially as aluminium contains Al3+ ions.
there will be environmental considerations associated with transfer of
materials and disposal of waste.
A diagram of the process used is shown above.
Cryolite, Na3AlF6, is added to the bauxite to lower its melting point.

The outer casing of the cell is made the cathode.

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

The aluminium formed is a liquid and can therefore be continually drained


from the bottom of the cell.

Graphite electrodes are used as the anode. They are part of the reaction.

The use of graphite anodes leads to the production of carbon dioxide rather than
oxygen and results in the need to continually replace the graphite.
Cathode: Al3+(l) + 3e- Al(l)
Anode:
Overall:

2O2-(l) + C(s) CO2(g) + 4e2 Al3+(l) + 6O2-(l) + 3C(s)

2Al(l) + 3CO2(g)

More complex question


10 mole of electrons is passed through the circuit below. The cells are all connected in
series. Calculate the mass of each metal produced in each cell.

AgCl(aq)

CuCl2(aq)

AlCl3(aq)

As the cells are connected in series, the same number of mole of electrons passes
through each cell. The metals have different oxidation states, so the number of mole
of metal obtained will differ.
Ag+(aq) + e Ag(s)

Cu2+(aq) + 2e Cu(s)

2H2O(l) + 2e H2(g) + 2OH-(aq)


(note: water reacts instead of aluminium)

10 mol electrons therefore gives


10 mol of silver

5 mole of copper

and no aluminium

Points to note:
The same number of mole of electrons passes through each electrode
Reactive metals are not produced in aqueous solutions
Metal ions are often chosen to reflect oxidation states of +1, +2 and +3

12

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Experiment
Aim: To predict the products and the masses changes at the electrodes in an
electrolytic cell.
Materials; power supply
ammeter

electrical leads
0.5 M CuSO4

copper sheet
balance

Procedure
1. Use the copper sheeting to cut two electrodes of size around 5 2 cm
2. Weigh both electrodes
3. Add 60 mL of CuSO4 to a 100 mL beaker
4. Connect the power supply to the ammeter and the two electrodes ready to turn
on the electrolytic cell.
Prediction: Determine the reactions that will occur at each electrode and the
products that will form.
__________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

5. Run the cell, timing the electrolysis for 5 minutes. Record the current used.
6. Remove both electrodes carefully. Rub the anode firmly with absorbent paper
to ensure it is dry. Reweigh it. Allow the cathode to dry in the oven, trying not
to lose any material from it. Reweigh it.
Measurements:

__________________________________________________

________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
Questions
1. a. Describe what you observed at each electrode.
____________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________
b. Were your predicted half-equations correct? Explain your answer/
_____________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________

2.

a. Use your current value to determine the mass change you would expect at
each electrode?
______________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
b. How did your predicted mass change compare to the actual mass change
at each electrode?
_____________________________________________________________

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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

_____________________________________________________________
c. Which electrode do you expect to give the more accurate reading?

____________________________________________________

Chapter summary
Electrolysis is a process where a power supply is
added to a circuit to cause a redox reaction to occur.
Electrolysis is used to electroplate items or to
produce elements that are hard to otherwise obtain.
The power supply will determine which electrode is
positive and which is negative.
A reaction will occur if

+ve ions

there is an oxidant and a reductant

the reductant is higher up the table than the oxidant i.e.

-ve ions

If there are several possible reactants, the strongest oxidant will react with the
strongest reductant.
In an aqueous solution, water is a possible reactant. Always include the following
two half equations as possible reactants in aqueous conditions
O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e 2H2O(l)
1.23 V
2H2O(l) + 2e H2(g) + 2OH (aq)
-0.83 V
The amount of metal produced in an electrolytic cell is calculated using the
following process

It = Q

n(e) = Q
n(metal) from balanced
96500
equation

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

mass(metal) = n x M

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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

The table below summarises the differences and similarities between galvanic and
electrolytic cells.

D IF F E R E N C E S B E T W E E N E L E C T R O L Y S IS
A N D G A LVA N IC C E L L S

G A L V A N IC C E L L S

E L E C T R O LY S IS

E le c tric a l e n e rg y u s e d to
b rin g a b o u t a n o n s p o n ta n e o u s c h e m ic a l re a c tio n .

S p o n ta n e o u s c h e m ic a l re a c tio n
p ro d u c e e le c tric a l e n e rg y .

C a rrie d o u t in o n e c e ll o r
c o m p a rtm e n t. O x id a n t a n d
re d u c tio n in c o n ta c t.

C a rr ie d o u t in tw o s e p a r a te
c o m p a rtm e n ts o r c e lls . O x id a n t
a n d re d u c ta n t n o t in c o n ta c t

N o sa lt b rid g e

S a lt b rid g e a llo w s m o v e m e n t
o f io n s f ro m o n e c e ll to a n o th e r.

A N O D E : O x id a tio n ( + v e )
C A T H O D E : R e d u c tio n ( -v e )

A N O D E : O x id a tio n ( - v e )
C A T H O D E : R e d u c tio n ( + v e )

P o la r ity o f e le c tr o d e s im p o s e d o n
th e m b y th e p o w e r s u p p ly

P o la r ity p r o d u c e d a s a r e s u lt
o f th e e le c tro d e re a c tio n .

U s e d to m a n u fa c tu re m a te ria ls
s u c h a s C u (s ) ,Z n ( s ),A l(s ) ,C l 2(g )

U s u a lly o n ly s m a ll s c a le
a p p lic a tio n s ; e .g . to rc h b a tte rie s .

e .g . N a ++ e
N a
2Cl
C l2 + 2 e

e .g . N a
N a +e
2 e + C l2 2 C l-

Checklist of Key Knowledge


electrolysis of molten liquids and aqueous solutions using
different electrodes.
Electrolysis is conducted on solutions. The solution might be
in water or it might
be the ionic solution heated until it turns to a liquid.
the general operating principles of commercial electrolytic
cells, including basic
structural features and selection of suitable electrolyte
(molten or aqueous)
and electrode (inert or reactive) materials to obtain desired
products.
the use of the electrochemical series to explain or predict the
products of an

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Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

electrolysis, including identification of species that are


preferentially
discharged, balanced half-equations, a balanced ionic
equation for the overall
cell reaction, and states
the comparison of an electrolytic cell with a galvanic cell with
reference to the
energy transformations involved and basic structural features
and processes
the application of stoichiometry and Faradays Laws to
determine amounts of
product, current or time particular electrolytic process.
Vocabulary: Write an explanation for each of the key terms listed
below
Aqueous solution _____________________________________________
Electrolyte
_____________________________________________
Molten solution _____________________________________________
Topic Test: Electrolysis
Total: 50 marks
Question 1
In an electrolytic cell
A. electrons will flow from the negative electrode to the positive electrode
B. reduction will occur at the cathode and the cathode will be positive
C. oxidation will occur at the anode and the anode is positive
D. oxidation will occur at the anode and the anode is negative
Question 2
The number 96500 is used frequently in electrolysis calculations. It represents the
A. charge on an electron
B. charge required to extract one mole of metal
C. mass of one mole of electrons
D. charge on one mole of electrons
Questions 3 and 4 relate to the information provided below.
Electrolysis is conducted on an aqueous solution of copper bromide using nonreactive electrodes

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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

Question 3
At the positive electrode in this cell
A. bromine liquid will form in an oxidation reaction
B. oxygen gas will form in an oxidation reaction
C. copper metal will be deposited in a reduction reaction
D. hydrogen gas will be formed in a reduction reaction
Question 4
At the negative electrode in this cell
A. bromine ions will form in a reduction reaction
B. copper metal will form in a reduction reaction
C. hydrogen gas will form in an oxidation reaction
D. hydrogen gas will form in a reduction reaction
Question 5
The half equation that separates metals that can be extracted from aqueous solutions
from the metals that can only be extracted from molten solutions is
A. O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e 2H2O(l)
B. O2(g) + 2H2O(l) + 4e 4OH-(aq)
C. 2H+(aq) + 2e H2(g)
D. 2H2O(l) + 2e H2(g) + 2OH-(aq)
Question 6
Select the correct statement about the electrolysis of dilute sodium chloride.

A. Hydrogen gas will form at the cathode and chlorine gas at the anode
B. Water is the strongest oxidant present and the strongest reductant present
C. Chlorine gas will react with sodium metal
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D. The strongest oxidant will react with the weakest reductant


Question 7
Which ionic compound will produce the same products whether a molten solution is
used or an aqueous solution?
A. NaCl
B. NaI
C. CuCl2
D. CuI2
Use the following information to answer Questions 8 and 9
Three beakers are set up in a row and connected in series so that the same electric
current can be passed through each cell. The contents of the beakers are, respectively,
0.1 M AgNO3, 0.1 M Pb(NO3)2 and 0.1 M Al(NO3)3
Question 8
The cell that deposits the greatest number of mole of metal will be
A. the silver cell
B. the lead cell
C. the aluminium cell
D. none of the cells as an equal number of mole of each metal will form
Question 9
The cell that deposits the greatest mass of metal will be
A. the silver cell
B. the lead cell
C. the aluminium cell
D. none of the cells as an equal mass of each metal will form
Question 10
When a current of 8.0 amps is passed through a molten ionic solution for 6 hours and
40 minutes, the mass of metal obtained is 18.0 g. The metal is most likely to be
A. lithium
B. sodium
C. aluminium
D. lead

SECTION B- Short-answer questions


Question 1
A sample of aluminium iodide powder is added to a crucible and heated until it is
molten. Graphite electrodes are then added and a current passed through this solution.
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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

AlI3

a.

On the diagram, use an


electron flow in the circuit.

arrow to show the direction of


1 mark

b. i. Which ions will flow towards the negative electrode? ___________________


ii. Write a half equation for the reaction that will occur at the negative electrode.
_________________________________________________________________
iii. Is this reaction oxidation or reduction? _______________________________

c.

iv. Is this electrode the anode or the cathode? ____________________________


1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 4 marks
i. Which ions will flow towards the positive electrode? _________________
ii. Write a half equation for the reaction that will occur at the negative electrode.
______________________________________________________________
iii. Is this reaction oxidation or reduction? ____________________________
iv. Is the electrode the anode or the cathode? _________________________
1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 4 marks

d. Write an overall equation for the reaction occurring in this cell


_________________________________________________________________
1 mark
e.

20

If 600 electrons pass through this circuit, how many


i.
atoms of iodine are produced? __________________________

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Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

ii.

atoms of aluminium are produced? ________________________


1 + 1 = 2 marks
Total 12 marks

Question 2
Items can be electroplated with silver using a circuit like the one shown below.

a.

Give two reasons for applying a silver coating to a metal item


_________________________________________________________________
____
2 marks
b. Manufacturers want the silver layer applied to be an effective layer. List two steps
that will help with the quality of the layer formed
____________________________________________________________________
_
2 marks
c. Write a balanced half equation for
i. the reaction at the anode ________________________________________
ii. the reaction at the cathode _____________________________________
1 + 1 = 2 marks
d. Why do you think silver is used for the positive electrode?
___________________________________________________________________
1 mark
e.

i.

Suggest a suitable substance to use as the electrolyte in this cell __________

ii.

Can an aqueous solution be used for this electroplating? Explain your answer.
Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

21

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

___________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________________
1 + 2 = 3 marks
Total 10 marks
Question 3
A dilute aqueous solution of nickel chloride is electrolysed using inert electrodes.
a. List the possible reactants present.
_______________________________________
1 mark
b.

List relevant half equations

___________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________
2 marks
c.

Which two species will react with each other? ___________________________


1 mark

d.

Write a balanced equation for the overall equation that will occur.

___________________________________________________________________
1 mark
e. The cell runs for 8.50 hours with a current of 14.4 amps. What mass of nickel will
be obtained?
___________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________
3 marks
Total 8 marks
Question 4
During chromium plating, an object gains 3.90 g of chromium. At the same time
0.900 L of oxygen gas is released at the other electrode.
22

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

The molar volume of the gas is 24.0 L at the temperature chosen.


What is the charge on the chromium ions in the solution used?
____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
4 marks
Question 5
The term brine is used to describe a sodium chloride solution that is relatively
concentrated.
When brine is electrolysed using inert electrodes, a pungent gas is produced at one of
the electrodes.
a. Write half equations for the reaction occurring at each electrode when brine is
electrolysed;
anode:_____________________ ___ cathode: __________________________
2 marks
b. Write a balanced overall equation for the reaction occurring in this cell.
_________________________________________________________________
____
1 mark
c. Three useful products are obtained from this cell. Name them
__________________________________________________________________
___
2 marks
d.

If phenolphthalein indicator is added to this cell, what colour will it be near the
cathode?
___________________________________________________________________

__
1 mark
Total 6 marks
=============================================================

Solutions to Self-Testing Questions

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

23

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

1.

2Al3+(l) + 6e- 2Al(l)


6Br-(l) 3Br2(l) + 6e-

2.

Anode: 2H2O(l) 02(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e-.


Cathode: Cu2+(aq) + 2e- Cu(s).
Overall: 2H2O(l) + 2Cu2+(aq) O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 2Cu(s).

3.

a.

Anode: 2H2O(l) O2(g) + 4H+(aq) 4e-.


Cathode: Ag+(aq) + e- Ag(s).

b.

Anode: 2I-(aq) I2(aq) + 2e-.


Cathode: 2H2O(l) + 2e- H2(g) + 2OH-(aq).

4.

Q = It = 6 x 2 x 3600 = 43200
n(e) = 43200/96500 = 0.448 = n(Ag)
m = 0.448 x 107 = 48.3 g

5.

a.

n(Al) = 1000/26.9 = 37.2


n(e) = 3n(Al) = 3 x 37.2 = 112 mol
Q = 96500 x 112 = 1080000
t = Q/I = 1080000/150000 = 71.5 sec.

b.

n(CO2) = 1/4 n(e) = x 112 = 28


V = n x 22.4 = 28 x 22.4 = 627 L.
mass(C) = n x M = 28 x 12 = 336 g.

c.

Further Questions
1.

Pick the correct statement:


a. In electrolysis, the anode is positive.
b. All metals can be extracted by electrolysis of aqueous solutions
c. Galvanic cells are highly endothermic processes
d. Electrolysis reactions are used to generate an electric current

2.

Electroplating
a. is an example of an exothermic redox reaction
b. is only used with expensive metals.
c. is difficult to control because of the vast amounts of energy generated.
d. can be used to place a thin, even layer of one metal onto another.

3. The number of mole of electrons required to electroplate 3 mole of aluminium


from molten solution is
a. 1
b. 3
c. 6
d. 9
24

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

4.

If an overall equation is

2H2O(l) + 2Cl- (aq) + 2Na+(aq) Cl2(g) + 2OH- (aq) + H2(g) + 2Na+(aq)


the commercial products obtained from the process might be
a. chlorine, hydrogen, sodium hydroxide
b. water, chlorine, salt
c. chlorine, water, hydrogen and hydroxide
d. chlorine, hydrogen
5.

An electric current is passed through 1 M solutions of AgNO3, Cu(NO3) 2 and


NaNO3. The ratio of the number of mole of each metal will be, respectively,
a. 2:1:2
b. 1:1:1
c. 2:1:0
d. 2:2:2

6.

Use the electrochemical series to complete the Table below, assuming inert
electrodes have been used in each of the cells listed:
a.
b.
c.
d.

CuI2(molten)
CuI2(aq)
CuCl2(aq)
AlI3(aq)
a

anode
reaction
cathode
reaction
overall
equation
observations of
changes at
electrodes
7. A current of 20.0 amps is run for 10.0 mins through a CuI2(molten) cell.
a. What mass of copper would be obtained ?
b. What volume of chlorine would be obtained if the pressure of collecting
chamber is 200000 Pa and the temperature 6000 C. ?
.
8. A series of car wheels are electroplated with chromium.
a. Painting the bumper with chromium would be cheaper and faster. Why was
electroplating chosen?
b. Is this process endothermic or exothermic?
Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

25

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

c.
d.
e.

Is the bumper the positive or negative electrode?


Is it the anode or the cathode?
Write a balanced equation for the plating of chromium.

9.
Students frequently confuse features of galvanic cells with those of electrolytic
cells. Some rules hold for either cell and some are reversed. Complete the table below
to see if these rules are clear in your mind. Select the correct alternative where two
answers are offered.
Galvanic cell

Electrolytic cell

This is exothermic/endothermic.
Oxidation at the anode/cathode
Reduction at the anode/cathode
The anode is positive/negative
Electrons travel to the anode/cathode

This is exothermic/endothermic
Oxidation at the anode/cathode
Reduction at the anode/cathode
The anode is positive/negative
Electrons travel to the anode/cathode

10. Sodium chloride can be found as a molten solution or an aqueous solution. The
end result of electrolysis however, is quite different from both solutions.
a.
b.

What basic difference between the two cells causes this difference?
Use equations to explain the different products obtained in the two cells.

11. Electrolysis can be used to verify the charge on a metal ion.


If 24.3 g. of magnesium is extracted from a molten solution using a charge of 193000
Coulomb, what must the charge on a magnesium ion be?

Solutions to Further Questions


1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

6.
anode
reaction
cathode
reaction
overall
equation

a
2I - I2 +2e

b
2I - I2 +2e

Cu2+(l) + 2e
Cu(s)

Cu2+(aq) + 2e
Cu(s)

Cu2+ (l) + 2I - Cu2+ (aq) +2I


Cu(s) + I2
Cu(s) + I2

observations of Brown liquid,


changes at
Copper plating
electrodes

26

Brown liquid,
Copper plating

c
2H2O O2
+4e+ 4H+
Cu2+(aq) + 2e
Cu(s)
Cu2+ (aq) +
2H2O(l) O2 +
4H+ + Cu(s)
Gas evolved,
Copper plating

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

d
2I - I2 +2e
2H2O(l) + 2e
H2 (g) + 2OH(aq)
2H2O(l) +2I -
H2 (g) + 2OH(aq) + I2
Brown liquid,
clear gas

Chemistry 12 VCE Essentials

7.

a. Q= It = 20 x 10 x 60 =12000 Coulomb
n(e) = 12000/96500 = 0.124 mole
n(Cu) = 1/2 n(e) = 0.062 mole
mass = n x M = 0.062 x 63.5 = 3.95 g
b.

8.

a.
b.
c.
d.
e.

n(Cl2)= n(Cu) = 0.062 mole


V=nRT/P = 0.062 x 8.31 x 873/200000
= 2.24 L
Electrolysis gives a very even layer
endothermic
negative
cathode
Cr3+(aq) + 3e Cr(s)

9.
Galvanic cell

Electrolytic cell

This is exothermic
Oxidation at the anode
Reduction at the cathode
The anode is negative
Electrons travel to the cathode

This is endothermic
Oxidation at the anode
Reduction at the cathode
The anode is positive
Electrons travel to the cathode

10. a. The big difference is the presence of water. When water is present, it will react
instead of the sodim
b. molten solution
2Cl- (aq) + 2Na+(aq) Cl2 (g) + 2Na(l)
aqueous solution
2H2O(l) + 2Cl- (aq) + 2Na+(aq) Cl2 (g) + 2OH- (aq) + H2 (g) + 2Na+(aq)
11. n(Mg) = m/M = 24.3/24.3 = 1 mole
n(e) = Q/96500 = 193000/96500 = 2 mole
the ratio of Mg to electrons is 1:2, so Mg 2+

Chapter 7Supplying and Using Energy

27

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