Oxidation and Reduction Essay

1247 Words5 Pages
OXIDATION AND REDUCTION WITH ITS REAL WORLD APPLICATION. * Reactions that involve a change in oxidation number are called oxidation-reduction reactions. Antoine-Lauren Lavoisier (1743-1794), formally known as the “Father of Chemistry” states that “Calcination as Oxidation is in relation to the products formed when metals e.g., mercury and iron are exposed to air and a certain amount of heat” (Elements of Chemistry, 1789). Surpassing Lavoisier’s theory, Georg Ernst Stahl (1660-1734), came up with a theory referred to as phlogiston; which describes the conversion of an oxidized metal to its original metal by reducing the weight difference of the pure metal and this was known as Reduction. With the development of the atomic theory, Oxidation ‘de-electronation’ could be defined as many, as the loss of electrons or the gain of oxygen, e.g., Oxidation of a potassium atom to a potassium ion K(S) → K(S)+ + e- and Oxidation of carbon to carbon dioxide (the more electronegative oxygen obtains greater share of carbon electrons) C(G) + O2(G) → CO2(G). While reduction ‘re elecronation’ could also be defined as the gain of electrons or the loss of oxygen, e.g., reduction of a chlorine atom to a chloride ion Cl(G) + e- → Cl(G)- and reduction of carbon dioxide to carbon monoxide CO2(G) + C(G) → 2CO(G). For these reactions to process, the presence of reactants that involve transferring electrons between reactants to form products should be available; these reactants are called reducing and oxidizing agents. An Oxidizing agent or oxidant, gains an electron, which is, reduced in a chemical reaction i.e. an electron acceptor; this means it decreases oxidation state by oxidizing other substances to gain electrons. These oxidants are usually elements with high oxidation states (H2O2, MnO4-) or highly electronegative elements (O2, Cl2, Br2). A Reducing agent or reductant loses

More about Oxidation and Reduction Essay

Open Document