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Electrolysis of water

Electrolysis of water

C036/3539

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Credit

GIPHOTOSTOCK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY GIPHOTOSTOCK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Electrolysis of water. Hydrogen gas bubbles produced at cathode in a Brownlee electrolysis apparatus. Electrolysis is a decomposition of water into oxygen and hydrogen due to electric current. Here current is supplied by a 9 V battery through two electrodes, anode (positive electrode) and cathode (negative electrode). Anode half-reaction: H2O -> O2 + H+ + e- (oxidation), cathode half-reaction: H+ + e- -> H2 (reduction). Complete balanced reaction: 2 H2O -> 2 H2 + O2. A small amount of sulfuric acid has been added to water to act as an electrolyte and speed up the process.

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