Balancing oxidation reduction reactions

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Balancing oxidation and reduction equation

Oxidation and reduction are always found to go hand in hand during a redox reaction. When an element or compound is oxidized, another element or another compound must be reduced.

An oxidant is reduced and simultaneously the reductant is oxidized. Here we study balancing chemical equations on the basis of oxidation and reduction.
  1. Balancing chemical equations by electron
  2. Balancing chemical equations by oxidation number

Balancing chemical equations by electron

  1. Ascertain the reactants and products, and their chemical formulas.
  2. Set up the partial equations representing the reduction of the oxidant, and the oxidation of the reductant.
  3. If the reaction occurs in acid solution use a requisite number of hydrogen ion for balancing the number of atoms involved in the partial equation and for alkaline solution use hydroxyl ions.
  4. Balancing chemical partial equations by adding a suitable number of electrons. These electrons indicate the electrons involves in the oxidation and reduction half-reactions.
  5. Multiply each partial equation by a suitable number so each of the two partial equations involves the same number of electrons.
  6. Add the partial equations and cancel out species that appear on both sides of the chemical equations.

Potassium permanganate in dilute sulfuric acid

Potassium permanganate in dilute sulfuric acid oxidizes iron ferrous state to the ferric state. In this chemical equation permanganate ions are the oxidant and ferrous ion the reductant.

The left-hand side of the ultimate equation will carry, permanganate ion (potassium permanganate), hydrogen ion (sulfuric acid) and ferrous ion (ferrous sulfate).

The Right-hand side will have as products, manganese(II) ion (manganese sulfate), water and ferric ion (ferric sulfate). The partial equation representing the reduction of the oxidant

MnO₄⁻ → Mn²⁺

Since the reaction occurs in an acid solution we utilize eight hydrogens to balance the four oxygen atoms in permanganate ion.

MnO₄⁻ + 8H⁺ → Mn²⁺ + 4H₂O

The above partial equation still unbalanced from the viewpoint of charge, the equation balanced by bringing in five electrons.

MnO₄⁻ + 8H⁺ + 5e ⇆ Mn²⁺ + 4H₂O

The partial equation representing the oxidation of the reductant.

Fe⁺² ⇆ Fe⁺³ + e

This equation multiplies by 5 and then adding to the partial equation representing the reduction of the oxidant.

MnO₄⁻ + 8H⁺ + 5e ⇆ Mn²⁺ + 4H₂O
5×( Fe⁺² ⇆ Fe⁺³ + e)

MnO₄⁻ + 8H⁺ + 5Fe⁺² → Mn²⁺ + 5Fe⁺³ + 4H₂O

Potassium iodide in dilute sulfuric acid

Oxidation of potassium iodide by potassium dichromate in dilute sulfuric acid. In this reaction, chromium is reduced +6 state to +3 state and iodide ion oxidized to elementary iodine.

Taking the dichromate side of the partial equation of reduction of oxidant and balancing the atoms and electrons.

Cr₂O₇⁻² + 14H⁺ + 6e ⇆ 2Cr⁺³ + 7H₂O

The partial equation representing the oxidation of the reductant.

2I⁻ ⇆ I₂ + 2e

This equation multiplies by 3 and adding with partial equations of the dichromate side.

Cr₂O₇⁻² + 14H⁺ + 6e ⇆ 2Cr⁺³ + 7H₂O
3 (2I⁻ ⇆ I₂ + 2e)

Cr₂O₇⁻² + 14H⁺ + 6I⁻→ 2Cr⁺³ + 3I₂ + 7H₂O

Permanganate ion in alkaline solution

Permanganate ion in alkaline solution oxidizes sodium stannite (Na₂SnO₂) to sodium stannate (Na₂SnO₃) with the formation of manganese dioxide.

The partial equation representing the reduction of oxidant in alkaline solution and balancing the chemical equations with a requisite number of hydroxyl ion.

MnO₄⁻ + 2H₂O → MnO₂ + 4OH⁻

The above partial equation still unbalanced from the viewpoint of charge, the equation balanced by bringing in three electrons.

MnO₄⁻ + 2H₂O + 3e ⇆ MnO₂ + 4OH⁻

The partial equation representing the oxidation of the reductant.

SnO₂⁻² + OH⁻ ⇆ SnO₃⁻² + H₂O + 2e

Balancing this chemical equation first partial equation multiplies 2 and the second partial equation multiply 3 and adding to given final balanced chemical equation.

2MnO₄⁻ + 4H₂O + 6e ⇆ 2MnO₂ + 8OH⁻³
SnO₂⁻² + 3OH⁻ ⇆ 3SnO₃⁻² + 3H₂O + 6e

2 MnO₄⁻ + 3 SnO₂⁻² + H₂O → 2 MnO₂ + 3 SnO₃⁻² + 2 OH⁻

Oxidation of manganese by lead dioxide in acid solution

Lead dioxide oxidizes manganese (II) to permanganate ion in sulfuric acid solution with the formation of lead (II) ion. Balancing chemical equation for this reaction.
Balancing chemical equations of oxidation reduction by electron
Balancing chemical equation by electron
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Problem
Balancing chemical equation of permanganate to manganous by hydrogen peroxide in acid solution.

Solution
The partial equation for the reduction of oxidant

MnO₄⁻ + 8H⁺ + 5e ⇆ Mn⁺² + 4H₂O

Hydrogen peroxide will give oxygen to an acid solution.

H₂O₂ ⇆ 2H⁺ + O₂ +2e

The first equation is multiplying by 2 and the second is 5 for balancing the chemical equation.

2MnO₄⁻ + 16H⁺ + 10e ⇆ 2Mn⁺² + 8H₂O
5H₂O₂ ⇆ 10H⁺ + 5O₂ +10e

2MnO₄⁻+5H₂O₂+6H⁺⇆2Mn⁺²+8H₂O+5O₂

Oxidation of manganese by NaBiO₃ in acid solution

NaBiO₃ oxidizes manganese (II) to permanganate ion in sulfuric acid solution with the formation of BiO⁺ ion. Balancing chemical equation for this reaction.
Balancing chemical equation by electron
Balancing chemical equation
Problem
Balancing chemical equation of reduction of nitrate ion to ammonia by aluminum in aqueous sodium hydroxide.

Answer
The partial equation for the reduction of oxidant in the sodium hydroxide solution.

NO₃⁻ + 6H₂O + 8e ⇆ NH₃ + 9OH⁻

Metallic aluminum will go over to aluminate ion in alkaline solution

Al + 4OH⁻ ⇆ AlO₂⁻ + 2H₂O + 3e

Multiplying by right factors for electron balancing the chemical equation.

3NO₃⁻ + 18H₂O + 24e ⇆ 3NH₃ + 27OH⁻
8Al + 32OH⁻ ⇆ 8AlO₂⁻ + 16H₂O + 24e

3NO₃⁻ + 8Al + 2H₂O + 5OH⁻ → 3NH₃ + 8AlO₂⁻

Balancing chemical equations by oxidation number

The oxidation number of oxygen remains unchanged manganese in permanganate has an oxidation number +7. Decreases and increases in oxidation numbers provide an idea about oxidation-reduction reactions.
Putting the right factors the decreases and increases in oxidation numbers and balancing chemical reactions.

MnO₄⁻ + 5Fe⁺² → Mn⁺² + 5Fe⁺³ 

Acidic solution the changes are not equal on the two sides of the above expression, hydrogen ions are added and the requisite number of water written.

MnO₄⁻ + 8H⁺ + 5Fe⁺² → Mn⁺² + 5Fe⁺³ + 4H₂O

Iodide ion in dilute sulfuric acid

Cr₂O₇⁻² + I⁻ → 2Cr⁺³ + I₂

The oxidation number of chromium decreases 2 and the oxidation number of Sn increases 1. Equalizing the increase and decrease in oxidation number.

Cr₂O₇⁻² + 6I⁻ → 2Cr⁺³ + 3I₂
Ionic charges are not equal on the two sides in an acid solution of the above expression. Fourteen hydrogen ions are added to the left-hand side and the requisite number of water added to the right-hand side.

Cr₂O₇⁻² + 6I⁻ + 8H⁺ → 2Cr⁺³ + 3I₂ + 7H₂O

Sodium stannite to stannate in alkaline solution

MnO₄⁻ + SnO₂⁻² → MnO₂ + SnO₃⁻²

The oxidation number of manganese decreases 3 and the oxidation number of Sn increases 2. Equalizing the increase and decrease in oxidation number.

2MnO₄⁻ + 3SnO₂⁻² → 2MnO₂ + 3SnO₃⁻²

Ionic charges are not equal on the two sides in the alkaline solution of the above expression. Two hydroxyl ions are added to the right-hand side.

2MnO₄⁻ + 3SnO₂⁻² → 2MnO₂ + 3SnO₃⁻² + 2OH⁻

Since there are two hydrogen atoms on the right and none on the left, water is added to balancing the chemical equations.

2MnO₄⁻ + 3SnO₂⁻² + H₂O → 2MnO₂ + 3SnO₃⁻² + 2OH⁻

Iodide ion and iodate ion in acid solution

I⁻ + IO₃⁻ → I₂

Change of oxidation number of iodine in the above chemical reaction.

I⁻(-1) + IO₃⁻(+5) → I₂(0)

Since I⁻ (-1) oxidation number of iodide increases 1 and IO₃⁻(+5) oxidation number decreases 5. Putting the right factors the decrease and increase in oxidation number for balancing equation.

5I⁻ + IO₃⁻ → 3I₂

Charges are unequal on two sides of the above expression in acid medium six hydrogen ion added on the left-hand side and write three water on the right-hand side.

I⁻ + IO₃⁻ + 6H⁺ → I₂ + 3H₂O

Sulfurous acid and dichromate in acid solution

SO₃⁻² + Cr₂O₇⁻² → SO₄⁻² + 2Cr⁺³

Oxidation of two chromium decreases 2 × (+3) = 6 and the oxidation number of sulfur increases 2. equalizing the above chemical equation.

3SO₃⁻² + Cr₂O₇⁻² → 3SO₄⁻² + 2Cr⁺³

Ionic charges are not equal on the two sides in acid medium, eight hydrogen ions are added to the left-hand side.

3SO₃⁻² + Cr₂O₇⁻² + 8H⁺ → 3SO₄⁻² + 2Cr⁺³

Since there are eight hydrogen ion on the left and none on the right, four water added to balance the chemical equation.

3SO₃⁻² + Cr₂O₇⁻² + 8H⁺ → 3SO₄⁻² + 2Cr⁺³ + 4H₂O
Balancing chemical equation by oxidation number
Balancing chemical equation by oxidation number

Balancing oxidation-reduction reactions, balancing chemical reactions in acid and alkaline solution, study oxidation number in chemical science

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