Electrolysis Essay

Topics: Metal, Electrochemistry, Zinc Pages: 5 (1619 words) Published: September 10, 2012
Chemistry Essay

The Importance Of Electrolysis in Our Daily Lives

“Electrolysis is the process by which ionic substances are decomposed (broken down) into simpler substances when an electric current is passed through them.” Electrolysis has a few main components like a battery, electrodes and electrolyte. In our daily lives we can see the applications of electrolysis in many ways. Some of the process of electrolysis is used for accumulators (car batteries), electroplating, electrotyping, electrolytic purification, electro-repairing, electric cell, water electrolysis, hair removal, and the manufacturing of many chemicals like chlorine, sodium chloride, and bleach. Electrolysis is also used to extract reactive metals like aluminum and the purification of copper. [1][2] Electrolysis has many benefits like bleach. Bleach is usually used in cleaning household materials, and to whiten/lighten or clean stains on white cloth. Bleach is also used by ladies on their face to make their face white and bright. Other than that there is electroplating. Electroplating is the coating of a metal over the other metal. Electroplating is done for a few reasons to benefit us: [3]

1) http://www.ejeinc.ca/NewFolder1/photos/electro_plating.jpg

Resistance to corrosion and increased life span: A coat of one less valuable metal on a valuable metal can be beneficial. E.g. if zinc is electroplated on iron then it will protect iron from getting corroded and would ensure proper usage. [3] 2) Provision of insulation: Insulating materials can be electroplated for safety of animals. E.g. plastic can be electroplated on aluminum or copper for protection from shocks. [3] 3) Better appearance e.g. chrome, nickel or silver can produce a mirror like finish: This is a very common method used for everyday living. Electroplating of silver, chrome or nickel protects the base metal from corrosion or scratches and it also provides a shiny attractive look for jewelry’s and decorations. [3] Next is electrotyping. Electrotyping is a labeling or decorative where a wax figure is made and coated with carbon and is used as an electrode which can deposit metals forming a solid plate made of a thin sheet of pure metal. E.g. copper metal. [3]

[1] BBC News. BBC, n.d. Web. 20 Aug. 2012. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/science/add_aqa_pre_2011/ions/electrolysisrev1.shtml>.
[2] "Electrolysis Chemistry." - Essays. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Aug. 2012. <http://www.oppapers.com/essays/Electrolysis-Chemistry/722434>.
[3] "Project Helpers." : Importance of Electrolysis in Our Daily Lives. N.p., 22 Jan. 2011. Web. 20 Aug. 2012. <http://helpinhans.blogspot.com/2011/01/importance-of-electrolysis-in-our-daily.html>.

Electrolytic Purification: [3]
Nowadays, pure metal is in high demand. Electrolysis can be used to purify metals such as purification of copper. A pure bar of cathode attached to the impure cathode can have deposits of that metal from the impure metal electrode from the anode.

Electric Cell: - [3]
Battery, the most common object used everyday uses electrolysis for voltage differences. It is the reverse of electrolysis. It is made by placing two different metals in contact with an electrolyte. The metal acts as the electrodes for a simple cell. The farther away the metal in the reactivity series, the higher voltage and current is produced. Water Electrolysis:-[3]

Water is used in many places today. It is one of the most common and oldest method scientists have found out. Water electrolysis is helping for a safer poultry industry. It is also used for collecting oxygen and hydrogen separately for their specific purposes. Electro-repairing:-[3]

This is a technique used for repairing broken machinery. The whole surface of broken object is covered with wax except where the repair is needed and is made the cathode and dipped in an electrolysis bath. The metals deposits on the dent or the...
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