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What is Galvanic Cells and how it work?

23-FEB-2016 10:06

    The Galvanic Cells is a device that transforms chemical energy into electric energy. It is the common application of electro chemistry which is also called battery. It was invented by Luigi Galvani and Alessandro Volta which has capability of producing a voltage.

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    In this cell there is a container in which a solution of concentrated Copper Sulphate (CuSO4) is kept inside it and a copper rod is inserted inside the solution of CuSO4 which act like cathode. Inside this container a porous container is kept in which concentrated Sulphuric Acid (H2SO4) is filled in which a zinc rod is inserted in it which acts like anode. Thus when a wire is connected through copper rod and zinc rod an electric current starts to flow.

    Important components of Galvanic Cells

    • The anode is an electrode where oxidation occurs.
    • The cathode is an electrode where reduction occurs.
    • A salt bridge is a chamber of electrolytes necessary to complete the circuit in a voltaic cell.
    • The oxidation and reduction reactions are separated into compartments called half-cells.
    • The external circuit is used to conduct the flow of electrons between the electrodes of the voltaic cell and usually includes a load.
    • The load is the part of the circuit which utilizes the flow of electrons to perform some function.

    How Galvanic Cells work?

    The Galvanic cells have two conductive electrodes, called the anode and the cathode. The anode is an electrode where oxidation occurs. The cathode is an electrode where reduction takes place. Electrodes can be made from any sufficiently conductive materials, such as metals, semiconductors, graphite, and even conductive polymers. In between these electrodes is the electrolyte, which contains ions that can freely move.

    The cell uses two different metal electrodes, each in an electrolyte solution. The anode will undergo oxidation and the cathode will undergo reduction. The metal of the anode will oxidize, going from an oxidation state of 0 (in the solid form) to a positive oxidation state, and it will become an ion. At the cathode, the metal ion in the solution will accept one or more electrons from the cathode, and the ion's oxidation state will reduce to 0. This forms a solid metal that deposits on the cathode. The two electrodes must be electrically connected to each other, allowing for a flow of electrons that leave the metal of the anode and flow through this connection to the ions at the surface of the cathode. This flow of electrons is an electrical current that can be used to do work, such as turn a motor or power a light.

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