Electrolysis of Water and Copper Essay

Electrolysis of Water and Copper Essay

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“Electrolysis of water is the decomposition of water into oxygen and hydrogen gas due to an electric current being passed through the water.” As we know, water is a model of molecular compound, in which atoms are bounded with each other by sharing electrons. This type of bond is known as covalent bond. In order to divide the water solution into two constituents, Hydrogen H and oxygen O2, we use the method of water electrolysis. I predicted that we are going to separate water solution into hydrogen and oxygen substances by passing an electric current along them. The electric current charged negatively is called cathode, while electric current charged positively is called anode. Further, the positive charged ions (cations) are likely to step toward cathode, whilst negatively charged ions (anions) are likely to move toward anode. The reaction that happen during the electrolysis of water is described as below:
2H2O (aq) → 2H2 (g) + O2 (g)
- Plastic cup
- Wire
- 9 volt battery
- 2 test tubes
- Electrolyte
- NaHCO3

- Place first 30 to 50ml NaCl into a plastic cup to act as electrolyte
- Label one tube positive(+) and negative(-) and attach 2 wires to the 9 volt battery
- Insert a wire into each tube of the test tubes with NaHCO3 and label each tube (no air in the tube)
- Observe what happens to the exposed part of the wire in each tube.

Fig.1. The electrolysis of water occurring in plastic cup

The solution of sodium chloride (NaCl), will assist the conductress of electric current in electrolysis. Sodium chloride facilitates the flow of electric current along the solution and terminals of battery. Since, sodium chloride is a salt in contact with water it ruptures in Na+ and Cl- ions which are...

... middle of paper ...

...rts the electricity along electrodes. Since, the silver nitrate is an oxidizer that loses electrons and allows the current to flow, however the reduction that occurs in cathode gains electrons and galvanize over the coin. The process that continues during electroplating of copper is described as below:
(Anode) Cu2+ (aq) + 2e- = Cu(s)
(Cathode) Cu(s) = Cu2+(aq) + 2e-
The chemical reaction of silver nitrate and copper during electroplating process:
2 AgNO3 + Cu → Cu (NO3)2 + 2 Ag
Silver nitrate (aq) also decays (g) when is excited:
2 AgNO3 → 2 Ag + O2 + 2 NO2
There might be some sources of error in the contamination of silver nitrate and in the amount poured in the plastic cup. Also, another source of error might be the layer of coin made of copper, which sometimes are covered with different dirties and in addition doesn’t allow the electroplating process to occur.

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