There are a number of ways that you could carry out electrolysis in Chemistry. This is an outline of the required steps to undertake one of these methods.
To investigate the electrolysis of copper(II) sulfate solution, and of sodium chloride solution, using inert (unreactive) electrodes.
Record what happens at each electrode, including the results of the gas tests.
Identify the gases produced during the two experiments.
Name the brown substance produced at the negative electrode during the electrolysis of copper(II) sulfate.
The brown substance was copper.
Explain why it may be difficult to obtain positive results in the tests for gases.
The volumes of gas collected are very small, making it difficult to carry out the tests.
It is important in this practical activity to use appropriate apparatus and methods. This includes the safe use and careful handling of substances.
Evaluate the hazards and the precautions needed to reduce the risk of harm. For example:
|Hazard||Possible harm||Possible precaution|
|Copper(II) sulfate solution||Causes skin irritation. Causes serious eye irritation||Wear gloves; wear eye protection|
|Chlorine gas||Toxic if inhaled||Make sure the lab is well ventilated and avoid inhaling the gas; do not run the experiment any longer than is necessary to collect a sample|
|dc electricity supply||Electric shock||Make sure electrodes do not touch; make sure that electricity supply is switched off before handling apparatus|