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Last updated: September 4, 2019

What Does Electrode Mean?

An electrode is an electrical conductor that makes contact with the nonmetallic circuit parts of a circuit, such as an electrolyte, semiconductor or vacuum. If in an electrochemical cell, this is also known as an anode or cathode. The anode is an electrode in which electrons leave the cell, and oxidation occurs at this point. Electrons enter the cell through the cathode, where a reduction process occurs.

An electrode cannot be permanently fixed because it can take the role of an anode or cathode, depending on the electron flow direction.

Another type is a bipolar electrode, which simultaneously takes on the role of an anode of one cell and a cathode of the other cell.


Corrosionpedia Explains Electrode

Grounding of conductors is necessary to prevent corrosion. Underground metals may corrode due to the presence of stray currents that flow in the ground. There are many types of electrodes, depending on their function. In an electrochemical cell, an electrode is referred to as an anode or a cathode, depending on the electron flow direction.

An anode is the terminal or conductor where electrons leave the electrochemical cell, causing oxidation to occur in the region. In the cathode, electrons enter the cell and are characterized by the reduction reactions. Both the anode and cathode can change polarities, depending on the direction of current. Primary cells have fixed anodes and cathodes and can only be discharged (not recharged). In these cells, the reactions cannot be reserved. In secondary cells, chemical reactions are reversible. The cell is rechargeable in cases where the anode becomes the positively charged electrode, and the cathode becomes the negatively charged electrode.

Corrosion in electrodes can be severe, especially when there are fluctuating potentials in the electrolyte. It is also severe when the two electrodes used as the anode and cathode are of different metals. This can be reduced by the use of inhibitors and other effective methods that help prevent electrode attacks.

A popular process is cathodic inhibition, which forms a passivation layer, preventing access to corrosive substances. It slows cathodic reaction, while simultaneously precipitating these areas – significantly reducing the rate of corrosion at the cathode electrode.


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