The effect of water salinity on electrolysis
Sea water with higher salinity will conduct more electricity.
Electrolysis is the process where electric current passes through a solution. The process requires a voltage source, an anode (positive) electrode, a cathode (negative) electrode and an electrolyte solution.
The electrolysis process will start when the positive terminal of a battery is connected to the anode and the negative terminal of the battery is connected to the cathode. When this connection is done, the positive ions in the electrolyte will move towards the cathode and the negative ions will move towards the anode resulting in current flow.
Water by itself is a poor conductor. But if salt or sodium chloride is added to water, it can start to conduct electricity through the electrolysis process.
Sodium chloride in solid form does not conduct electricity. The electrostatic attraction between the sodium ion and chloride ion is very strong when it is in solid form. However when sodium chloride is mixed in water, the sodium and chloride ions are separated and move freely in the solution making it a good electrolyte.
1. Use only batteries. NEVER connect to a mains supply.
2. Conduct the experiment under supervision of a qualified person (science teacher). Flammable gasses may be released.
3. Electrolysis of sea water may produce chlorine gas. Take necessary precaution. Ensure that the experiment is conducted in a well-ventilated laboratory