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Glossary of Electrochemistry

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Oxidation State
Equal to the charge of an ion or to the charge an atom would have if the compounds were ionic, represents the degree of oxidation of an element.
Reduction
Loss of electrons, process in which the oxidation state of an element decreases.
Oxidation
Gain of electrons, process in which the oxidation state increases
Disporportionate Reaction
A reaction in which a substance undergoes both oxidation and reduction.
Oxidizing/Reducing Agent
an element whose oxidation state increases/decreases; gain/loss of electrons.
Electrode Potential
Measure of electric charge density on an electrode where oxidation/reduction occurs
Anode
Electrode where oxidation occurs
Cathode
Electrode where reduction occurs
Galvanic cell
Electrochemical cell that produces electricity as a result of a spontaneous reaction.
Free Energy
Portion of total energy that can be used for work.
Entropy
Degree of disorder within a system.
Enthalpy
Amount of internal energy in a system capable of doing work.
Corrosion
Deterioration of a substance through unwanted oxidation
Sacrificial Anode
the active metal in cathodic protection, one being oxidized.
Cathodic Protection
Process of coating an active metal such as magnesium to an object in order to protect it from oxidation
Electrolysis
Forcing of a non-spontaneous reaction to occur.

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