A reduction reaction is defined as the gain of electrons and oxidation is defined as loss of electrons. In other words, oxidation is loss whereas reduction of the ion is the gain. The reaction which consists of both oxidation and reduction is termed as a redox reaction. These redox reactions find numerous applications in real life.
Applications of Redox Reactions
- Combustion: Combustion is a type of oxidation-reduction reaction and hence it is a redox reaction. An explosion is a fast form of combustion and hence explosion can be treated as a redox reaction. Even the space shuttle uses redox reactions. The combination of ammonium perchlorate and powdered aluminium inside the rocket boosters gives rise to oxidation-reduction reaction. Electrochemistry also finds its application with redox reactions. The study of the relationship between chemical and electrical energy is defined as electrochemistry. The battery used for generating DC current uses redox reaction (oxidation-reduction) to produce electrical energy.
- Electrochemistry: Electrochemistry also finds its application with redox reactions. The study of the relationship between chemical and electrical energy is defined as electrochemistry. The battery used for generating DC current uses redox reaction (oxidation-reduction) to produce electrical energy.
- Electrochemical cell: Batteries or electrochemical cells used in our day-to-day life are also based on redox reactions. For example, storage cells are used in vehicles to supply all the electrical needs of the vehicles.
- Photosynthesis: Green plants convert water and carbon dioxide into carbohydrates and this process is defined as photosynthesis.The reaction is given as: 6CO2 + 6H2O → C6H12O6 + 6O2
In the above reaction, we can see that carbon dioxide is reduced to carbohydrates while the water gets oxidized to oxygen and hence it is a redox reaction. The energy is provided by the sunlight for this reaction. This reaction is a source of food for animals and plants.
- Production of some important chemicals is also based on electrolysis which in turn is based on redox reactions. Many chemicals like caustic soda, chlorine, etc. are produced using redox reactions.
- Oxidation-Reduction reactions or redox reactions also find their application in sanitizing water and bleaching materials.
The main source of oxidation is oxygen and therefore redox reactions or oxidation-reduction reactions are responsible for food spoilage. To gain more knowledge about redox reactions, join Byju’s.