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Chemical reaction in which oxidation states of atoms are changed / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Redox (reduction–oxidation, /ˈrɛdɒks/ RED-oks, /ˈrdɒks/ REE-doks[2]) is a type of chemical reaction in which the oxidation states of substrate change.[3] Oxidation is the loss of electrons or an increase in the oxidation state, while reduction is the gain of electrons or a decrease in the oxidation state.

Sodium "gives" one outer electron to fluorine, bonding them to form sodium fluoride. The sodium atom is oxidized, and the fluorine is reduced.
When a few drops of glycerol (mild reducing agent) are added to powdered potassium permanganate (strong oxidizing agent), a violent redox reaction accompanied by self-ignition starts.
Example of a reduction–oxidation reaction between sodium and chlorine, with the OIL RIG mnemonic[1]

There are two classes of redox reactions:

  • Electron-transfer – Only one (usually) electron flows from the reducing agent to the oxidant. This type of redox reaction is often discussed in terms of redox couples and electrode potentials.
  • Atom transfer – An atom transfers from one substrate to another. For example, in the rusting of iron, the oxidation state of iron atoms increases as the iron converts to an oxide, and simultaneously the oxidation state of oxygen decreases as it accepts electrons released by the iron. Although oxidation reactions are commonly associated with the formation of oxides, other chemical species can serve the same function.[4] In hydrogenation, C=C (and other) bonds are reduced by transfer of hydrogen atoms.