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CHM171L Physical Chemistry Laboratory 2

1st Quarter SY 2016-2017


School of Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, Mapa Institute of Technology

Electrochemistry: Determination of Faradays Constant


Marquez, Ariziel Ruth1; Inagan, Ronalyn2; Legarde, Jasmine Marjorie2; Loyzaga, Earah Llou2; Mayo, Ronalie Nicole2;
Mendoza, Theresa2
Professor, School of Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, Mapa Institute of Technology; 2Student, CHM171L
/ B11, School of Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, Mapa Institute of Technology
1

ABSTRACT

Electrochemistry is a branch of chemistry that studies chemical reactions which take place in a solution at the
interface of an electron and an ionic conductor. In electrolytic cell, the quantitative determination of products is
governed by Faradays Law of Electrolysis. This law states that the quantity of electricity, that passes the solution
is directly proportional to the amount of electron transferred and that proportionality factor is called the Faradays
constant. The main apparatus used for this experiment is the Electrolytic analyzer equipment while the reagents
used are copper sulfate solution and concentrated nitric acid. The reduction of copper and oxidation of water
occurred when the electricity flowed in the aqueous solution. In the electrolysis the copper produced that was
deposited in the platinum and the bubbles formed showing that the oxygen was produced. A total of 6 runs were
made and all of these have given a value of Faradays constant by equation two equations of electricity measured
in Coulomb. The calculated Faradays constant for each run were close to each other and gives a percentage
error of more than 1%.
Keywords: electrochemistry, faraday, electron, copper, electricity

INTRODUCTION

wherein electrons are lost is anode where oxidation


of water occurs, producing oxygen gas.

Electrochemistry is a branch of chemistry


that studies chemical reactions which take place in a
solution at the interface of an electron and an ionic
conductor. It also involves electron transfer between
the electrode and the electrolyte or species in
solution. It focuses on the interconversion of
electrical energy to chemical energy.
Primarily, electrochemistry is concerned with the flow
of electrons described by Reduction-Oxidation
(Redox) reaction. This reaction involves the
exchange of electrons from one chemical species to
another. The species that loses electrons is said to
be oxidized and the other species that gains the
electrons is reduced.
For electrolytic cells, electricity is needed for the
reaction to take place. The electrode that gains
electrons by means of electricity is the cathode
where positive ions such as Cu +2 ions are attracted,
converting ions into copper metal. And the electrode

Figure 1. Parts of an Electrolytic Cell Using CuSO4 as an


Electrolyte

The formation of copper is illustrated by the


accumulation of copper in the cathode known as
electroplating and the oxidation of water is
demonstrated by the evolution of oxygen gas.
In electrolytic cell, the quantitative determination of
products is governed by Faradays Law of

Experiment 05: Thermodynamic of Mixtures: Determination of Partial Molar Enthalpy

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CHM171L Physical Chemistry Laboratory 2


1st Quarter SY 2016-2017
School of Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, Mapa Institute of Technology

Electrolysis. This law states that the quantity of


electricity (Q), that passes the solution is directly
proportional to the amount of electron transferred (n)
and that proportionality factor is called the Faradays
constant (F).
It also states that the mass of an element produced
at an electrode is proportional to the quantity of
electricity passed through the electrolyte wherein the
quantity of electricity is defined as the product of
current and time of electrolysis.
Likewise, the amount of electron transferred (n) is
expressed in moles and defined as
m
n=
f
MW

(Equation 1)

From equation 1, amount of electron transferred (n)


is equal to the mass an element produced (m)
divided by its molar mass (MW) and multiplied by its
valence number.
Experimentally, Faradays constant is determined by
electrolysis of copper sulfate and variables such as
mass of copper produced (m), molar mass of copper
(MW) and its valence number (f), current (I) used
and time of electrolysis (t).
F=

ItMW
mf

bigger mesh acts as the cathode and the smaller as


anode. But, this can be change by changing the
polarity in the electro-analyzer. It has a stirrer in the
middle of the bigger and smaller mesh (electrodes)
that rotates at about 620 rpm which makes the ions
in the electrolyte well distributed.
MATERIALS AND METHODOLOGY
Apparatus used for this experiment are the
following: Electrolytic analyzer equipment (Figure 1),
analytical balance, stopwatch, 500 ml beaker,
electrodes and stirring rod. While the reagents used
are as follows: Copper sulfate solution and
concentrated nitric acid.

(Equation 2)

Figure 2. Eberbach Electro-Analyzer 1000 Model

The instrument used to study processes in an


electrolytic cell and to determine the Faradays
constant experimentally is the Electro-analyzer. In
the experiment, this apparatus is used in the
electrolysis of copper sulfate solution with controlling
the current that passes through the electrode. It has
two setups working simultaneously and uses
platinum mesh as inert electrodes in which the
Experiment 05: Thermodynamic of Mixtures: Determination of Partial Molar Enthalpy

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CHM171L Physical Chemistry Laboratory 2


1st Quarter SY 2016-2017
School of Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, Mapa Institute of Technology

oxidation of water occurred when the electricity


flowed in the aqueous solution. The following are the
results for the experiment:
A. Weight of Copper deposited (grams)

Figure 3
.Electroanalyzer
First, the two working electrodes were weighed
then the copper sulfate was poured into the beaker.
The working electrodes, stirring rod and beaker were
placed to their respective positions and the power
was switched on along with the timer simultaneously.
After two minutes, the power of the electro analyzer
was switched off and the electrode with copper
deposits was weighed. Immediately as the timer
starts, the current control knob was adjusted to three
different settings. The electrodes were cleaned with
1:3 nitric acid and were dried in order to be used for
the next trial / run. There were 3 trials done for this
experiment.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

To drive the non-spontaneous chemical reaction the


electrical energy was used. Electrolysis allowed to
proceed by the flow of current through the solution.
The half reactions are:
Cu( s)
*

Reduction:Cu 2+(aq)+2 e

+++4
e
*
Oxidation:2 H 2O O 2(g)+4 H
The electrolyte solution used in the experiment was
copper (II) sulfate. The reduction of copper and

Table 1. TRIAL 1 (left side)


Table 2. TRIAL 2 (right side)
Run
Current, A
Time, s
Run
Current, A
Time,s
A
4.00
120.02
A
4.00
120.02
B
4.60
120.04
B
4.60
120.04
C
5.20
120.54
C
5.20
120.54
Run
Initial
Final
Weight
Run
Initial
Final
Weight
Weight of
Weight
of
Cu, g
Weight
of
Weight
of
Cu, g
Pt, g
of Pt, g
Pt, g
of Pt, g
A
38.369
38.530
0.161
A
38.252
38.408
0.156
B
38.530
38.715
0.185
B
38.408
38.593
0.185
C
38.715
38.593
0.194
C
38.593
38.794
0.191
In the electrolysis the copper produced that was
deposited in the platinum and the bubbles formed
showing that the oxygen was produced. In table 1
and 2 results, it is observed that the amount of
deposited copper during electrolysis is directly
proportional to the amount of current used and
duration of electrolysis, which agrees to the
Faradays law of electrolysis.

Experiment 05: Thermodynamic of Mixtures: Determination of Partial Molar Enthalpy

B. Faradays Constant

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CHM171L Physical Chemistry Laboratory 2


1st Quarter SY 2016-2017
School of Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, Mapa Institute of Technology

Table 3.
Trial

Run

Faradays Constant

94742.7444

94835.3634

102657.58

97779.3708

94835.3634

104270.0031

Average

98186.737

% error
(TV=96500)

1.75%

In table 3, Faradays constant was computed with


the use of the equations formed from Faradays law
of electrolysis using the different values in table 1
and 2. The law states that the mass of a substance
altered at an electrode during electrolysis is directly
proportional to the quantity of electricity transferred
at that electrode. The quantity of electricity refers to
the quantity of electrical charge which is measured
in coulombs. The proportionality constant or
Faradays is the magnitude of electric charge per
mole of electrons.
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
In this experiment, Copper (II) Sulfate was the
reagent used for the oxidation of water and reduction
of copper known as the Redox reaction to occur.
Three runs were made for the left and right
electrodes of the electroanalyzer. For every trial, the
current is increased as well as the amount of copper
deposited.

Experiment 05: Thermodynamic of Mixtures: Determination of Partial Molar Enthalpy

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CHM171L Physical Chemistry Laboratory 2


1st Quarter SY 2016-2017
School of Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, Mapa Institute of Technology

A total of 6 runs were made and all of these have

weight is an important factor for the calculation of

given a value of Faradays constant by equation two

Faradays constant. Otherwise, unnecessary mass

equations of electricity measured in Coulomb. The

of other substance, e.g. salts, might be added to the

calculated Faradays constant for each run were

mass of the copper measured in the experiment.

close to each other and gives a percentage error of

REFERENCES

more than 1%. Hence, increasing the current and


amount of reactant would give an experimental
constant value of Faradays constant obeying the
law of Faradays law of electrolysis.
The percentage error might be the result of

1. Atkins, Peter & De Paula, Julio (2006). Atkins


Physical Chemistry 8th Edition. United States of
America: W.H. Freeman and Company.
2.
Definition
of
Electrochemistry
at
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrochemistry#Principl
es (accessed: August 28, 2016)

washing and drying of electrodes. It is recommended


to thoroughly wash and dry the electrodes since

Experiment 05: Thermodynamic of Mixtures: Determination of Partial Molar Enthalpy

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