Department of Physical Sciences and Mathematics
College of Arts and Sciences
University of the Philippines Manila
Oxidation and reduction reactions involve the transfer of electrons. These types of reactions can be carried in to two ways, one is both the oxidizing specie and reducing specie are put into contact and the other with both species separated into two connected compartments. The latter, involves the use of an electrochemical cell. In this cell, the oxidant and reductant are physically separated but has electrical contact by means of a
metals are oxidized to their respective cation and releases at the same time electrons. This electron travels through the conductor then to the right-hand side electrode where it is gained by the cations in the solution, thereby reducing it. The prolonged build-up of the charges due to oxidation and reduction is avoided by the migration of the cations and anions from the salt bridge. As electrons travel, a potential difference is made between the two electrodes and is given by \u03b5cell. \u03b5cell is also a measure of the spontaneity of the reaction, as stated by :
by measuring the electrode potentials, thermodynamic quantities such as the Gibbs free energy can be measured. Equilibrium constants as well as activity coefficient for ions in solutions can be computed from \u03b5cell measurements.
Tightly pack the tip of a 4-5 cm long pipet with cotton.
Immerse the tip in a solution of KCL or KNO3 until fully soaked.
Fill the pipet with 0.1 M CuSO4 solution.
Coil a copper wire in a metal rod with the diameter smaller than the pipet\u2019s. Leave some
Assemble the following test half-cells:
a. Zn l Zn2+ electrode: dip metal zinc (1 x 5 cm) in a 50 ml beaker with 25 ml 0.1 M
b. Pb l Pb2+ electrode: dip Pb wire (10 cm long) in a 50 ml beaker with 0.1 M Pb(NO3)2.
c. C l Fe2+, Fe3+ electrode: dip graphite rod in a 50 ml beaker with 12.5 ml 0.2 M
Fe(NH4)2(SO4)2 + 12.5 ml 0.2 M FeNH4(SO4)2
d. Pb l PbSO4(s), SO42- electrode dip lead wire coated with PbSO4 in 50 ml beaker with
25 ml 0.1 M K2SO4 (to prepare lead wire coated with PbSO4: dip Pb wire in conc.
H2SO4 until coated with white powdery substance )
Each of the prepared test electrode were coupled with the Cu l Cu2+ reference electrode. Having Cu l Cu2+ as the cathode (red terminal) and the test electrode as the anode. Respective voltages of the test electrodes were measured, with the reference electrode having a standard reduction potential of 0.34 V.
Two test electrodes were coupled and connected through a salt bridge. Cells A to D were prepared and their respective potential differences measured by means of a voltmeter. Below is the schematic diagram for cells A to B:
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