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Electrochemical Cell – O Level Chemistry

In this post, we’ll look at simple electrochemical cells as tested in O Level Chemistry.

A Simple Electrochemical Cell

In the simple cell, a different metal is used for both the cathode and the anode. The difference in potential between the two metals result in a potential difference, and hence electricity is being produced. The greater the difference in reactivity of the two metals, the higher the potential difference of the cell. If two similar metals are used, the potential difference is 0, and there will be no current flowing through.

The anode will be the more reactive metal, and the cathode will be the less reactive metal.

The diagram below shows the setup of a simple electrochemical cell (note for O Level Chemistry, knowledge of salt bridge is not tested, hence we’ll draw a cell without a salt bridge):

A simplified drawing of an electrochemical cell, as tested in O Level Chemistry.

Difference between electrochemical cell and electrolytic cell

In electrolysis, a battery or a source of electricity is needed. However, in a simple cell, electrical energy is being produced.

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