Bunsen cell

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Bunsen's cell

The Bunsen cell is a zinc-carbon primary cell (colloquially called a "battery") composed of a zinc anode in dilute sulfuric acid separated by a porous pot from a carbon cathode in nitric or chromic acid.

Cell details[edit]

The Bunsen cell is about 1.9 volts and arises from the following reaction:[1]

Zn + H2SO4 + 2HNO3 ZnSO4 + 2 H2O + 2 NO2

The cell is named after its inventor, German chemist Robert Wilhelm Bunsen, who improved upon the Grove cell by replacing Grove's expensive platinum cathode with carbon in the form of pulverized coal and coke. Like Grove's battery, Bunsen's emitted noxious fumes of nitrogen dioxide.

Bunsen used this cell to extract metals. Henri Moissan used a stack of 90 cells for the electrolysis of hydrogen fluoride to obtain the element fluorine for the first time.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Carhart, Henry Smith (1891). Primary Batteries. Boston: Allyn and Bacon. pp. 179–180. Retrieved 2008-09-13. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]