Standard Hydrogen Electrode
The standard hydrogen electrode is referred to as normal hydrogen electrode in industries. It is responsible for the hydrogen break down process in fuel cells and generators. The Hydrogen electrode is responsible for a redox reaction which is capable of creating electricity in hydrogen generators. The standard hydrogen electrode is plated with plated with platinum to speed up the reaction. Catalysts are vital as it helps to promote the rate of the reaction and keep a steady supply of electricity flowing through the system. The standard hydrogen electrode is used to compare newer electrodes. The reason that platinum is used as the electrode is due to the inertness or low reactivity of platinum. The constant bombardment of protons and electrons would normally cause any other element to decompose or breakdown. However platinum removes the need for constant maintenance and replacement of the electrode. The breakdown of hydrogen is accelerated with the help of platinum. The proton reduction process will normally take a significant amount of time which is reduced with the aid of platinum. Platinum also has a high intrinsic exchange density for proton reduction.
Platinizing the electrode helps create a greater surface area for faster electrode kinetics which increases the overall rate of hydrogen breakdown. Platinization helps the absorption rate of protons and prevents electrons from passing through the membranes. The standard hydrogen electrode requires protection due to the high rate of reaction that occurs at the electrode. It must also be prevented from coming in contact with atmospheric oxygen. There are several inorganic ions such as iron and chromium which can be detrimental to the electrode if inserted into the system. Organic ions do pose a serious threat in case of contamination.
The overall schematics of a standard hydrogen electrode will contain the following components. A platinized platinum electrode which is connected to a hydrogen blow, in turn is soaked in a solution of acid. A hydro seal is pasted onto the crevices and openings to prevent atmospheric oxygen from leaking onto the standard electrode. The reservoir is attached to the second half element of the galvanic cell. There is a variety of different methods do connect the reservoir however a direct connection via a narrow tube is preferred. This will create the path with which the ions will travel through to the electrode where the majority of reactions will take place.
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