What Does Electropositive Mean?
Electropositive refers to the degree of likelihood of an element to lose electrons and become positively charged in a chemical reaction. More electropositive metals may be coupled with other corrosion-prone metals to reduce the rate of corrosion.
Corrosionpedia Explains Electropositive
The formation of electrolytic cells is the basis for rusting or corrosion reactions to occur. It is a chemical system whereby electrical currents are pushed throughout the system. This pushing is based on the degree of electropositivity in the system. The more positive the system, the greater the expulsion of electrons that occurs and vice versa. The process of electrolysis serves as the driving force of the redox reaction towards a fixed direction.
For instance, unprotected iron will rust in the presence of water and air due to the electrochemical process. However, steel rods can be protected from the same process by utilizing magnesium rods to offer cathodic protection against corrosion. Magnesium rods in this case are more electropositive than the steel.