Extraction of Metals
Electrolysis of Sodium Chloride.
This page shows the electrolysis of pure sodium
You get different products if
the sodium chloride is dissolved in water.
chloride must be
heated until it is molten
before it will conduct electricity.
Electrolysis separates the molten ionic compound into its elements.
The reactions at each electrode are called half
The half equations are written so that the same number of electrons
occur in each equation.
2Na+ + 2e-
metal at the (-)cathode).
2Cl- - 2e- Cl2 (chlorine gas at the (+)anode).
electrons (reduction) to form
Chloride ions lose electrons (oxidation) to form chlorine atoms.
The chlorine atoms combine to form molecules of chlorine gas.
The overall reaction is
2Na+Cl-(l) 2Na(s) + Cl2(g)
See some other examples of electrolysis.
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