Start Encyclopedia69 Dictionary | Overview | Topics | Groups | Categories | Bookmark this page.
dictionary -  encyclopedia  
Full text search :        
   A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   X   Y   Z   #   




  Electrolysis (New Latin electricus, ‘like amber’ and Greek luein, ‘to loosen’) is the chemical change produced in an electrolyte by an electric current. Generally an electrolyte is a solution in water of certain salts, for example, common salt, sodium chloride, dissolved in water is an electrolyte. For instance, aluminium is produced from ore by electrolysis using carbon electrodes.

Electrolysis is a redox (REDuction/OXidation) process where an atom or molecule loses electrons to another atom or molecule. When an electric current is passed through an electrolyte the positively charged ions in the solution are attracted towards the cathode (the negative electrode) while the negatively charged ions in solution are attracted towards the anode (the positive electrode). On reaching the electrodes the ions acquire or lose charges and may be deposited or appear as gas from the solution and form elements or similar compounds. An example of this is a solution of Copper Chloride (CuC12) which when subjected to electrolysis forms copper and chlorine gas.

Electrolysis is the basis of electroplating in which a thin layer of valuable metal is deposited upon cheaper and less valuable metal. Chromium plating on steel is accomplished by first depositing a thin layer of copper by electrolysis and then a more substantial layer of chromium. In this way the component receives a cohesive non-corroding polished surface. By contrast galvanized steel is produced by dipping steel into molten zinc—not by electrolysis.

In certain chemical processes molten metal may be used as an electrolyte. AA



Bookmark this page:



<< former term
next term >>


Other Terms : Black Holes | Dialectology | Dharmic Religion
Home |  Add new article  |  Your List |  Tools |  Become an Editor |  Tell a Friend |  Links |  Awards |  Testimonials |  Press |  News |  About |
Copyright ©2009 GeoDZ. All rights reserved.  Terms of Use  |  Privacy Policy  |  Contact Us