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Encyclopedia > Electrolyte

An electrolyte is any substance containing free ions that behaves as an electrically conductive medium. Because they generally consist of ions in solution, electrolytes are also known as ionic solutions, but molten electrolytes and solid electrolytes are also possible. They are sometimes referred to in abbreviated jargon as lytes. This article is about the electrically charged particle. ... In science and engineering, conductors, such as copper or aluminum, are materials with atoms having loosely held valence electrons. ... A proton conductor is an electrolyte where movable hydrogen ions are the primary charge carriers. ...



Electrolytes commonly exist as solutions of acids, bases or salts. Furthermore, some gases may act as electrolytes under conditions of high temperature or low pressure. Electrolyte solutions can also result from the dissolution of some biological (e.g. DNA, polypeptides) and synthetic polymers (e.g. polystyrene sulfonate), termed polyelectrolytes, which contain multiple charged moieties. For other uses, see acid (disambiguation). ... Acids and bases: Acid-base extraction Acid-base reaction Acid dissociation constant Acidity function Buffer solutions pH Proton affinity Self-ionization of water Acids: Lewis acids Mineral acids Organic acids Strong acids Superacids Weak acids Bases: Lewis bases Organic bases Strong bases Superbases Non-nucleophilic bases Weak bases edit In... This article is about common table salt. ... For other uses, see Gas (disambiguation). ... The structure of part of a DNA double helix Deoxyribonucleic acid, or DNA, is a nucleic acid molecule that contains the genetic instructions used in the development and functioning of all known living organisms. ... Peptides (from the Greek πεπτος, digestible), are the family of short molecules formed from the linking, in a defined order, of various α-amino acids. ... Polystyrene sulfonate Sodium polystyrene sulfonate is a type of polymer and ionomer based on polystyrene. ... Polyelectrolytes combine the properties of electrolytes (salts) and polymers (high MW compounds). ... In organic chemistry, functional groups (or moieties) are specific groups of atoms within molecules, that are responsible for the characteristic chemical reactions of those molecules. ...

Electrolyte solutions are normally formed when a salt is placed into a solvent such as water and the individual components dissociate due to the thermodynamic interactions between solvent and solute molecules, in a process called solvation. For example, when table salt, NaCl, is placed in water, the following occurs:
This article is about common table salt. ... For other uses, see Solvent (disambiguation). ... Impact from a water drop causes an upward rebound jet surrounded by circular capillary waves. ... A substance is soluble in a fluid if it dissolves in the fluid. ... Solvation is the attraction and association of molecules of a solvent with molecules or ions of a solute. ... R-phrases 36 S-phrases none Flash point Non-flammable Related Compounds Other anions NaF, NaBr, NaI Other cations LiCl, KCl, RbCl, CsCl, MgCl2, CaCl2 Related salts Sodium acetate Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ...

NaCl(s) → Na+ + Cl

In simple terms, the electrolyte is a material that dissolves in water to give a solution that conducts an electric current.

An electrolyte in a solution may be described as concentrated if it has a high concentration of ions, or dilute if it has a low concentration. If a high proportion of the solute dissociates to form free ions, the electrolyte is strong; if most of the solute does not dissociate, the electrolyte is weak. The properties of electrolytes may be exploited using electrolysis to extract constituent elements and compounds contained within the solution. For other uses, see Concentration (disambiguation). ... A substance is soluble in a fluid if it dissolves in the fluid. ... In chemistry and manufacturing, electrolysis is a method of separating chemically bonded elements and compounds by passing an electric current through them. ... The periodic table of the chemical elements A chemical element, or element, is a type of atom that is distinguished by its atomic number; that is, by the number of protons in its nucleus. ... Look up chemical compound in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

Physiological importance

In physiology, the primary ions of electrolytes are sodium (Na+), potassium (K+), calcium (Ca2+), magnesium (Mg2+), chloride (Cl-), phosphate (PO43-), and hydrogen carbonate (HCO3-). The electric charge symbols of plus (+) and minus (-) indicate that the substance in question is ionic in nature and has an imbalanced distribution of electrons. This is the result of chemical dissociation. This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... For sodium in the diet, see Salt. ... General Name, symbol, number potassium, K, 19 Chemical series alkali metals Group, period, block 1, 4, s Appearance silvery white Standard atomic weight 39. ... For other uses, see Calcium (disambiguation). ... General Name, symbol, number magnesium, Mg, 12 Chemical series alkaline earth metals Group, period, block 2, 3, s Appearance silvery white solid at room temp Standard atomic weight 24. ... The chloride ion is formed when the element chlorine picks up one electron to form an anion (negatively-charged ion) Cl−. The salts of hydrochloric acid HCl contain chloride ions and can also be called chlorides. ... A phosphate, in inorganic chemistry, is a salt of phosphoric acid. ... This refers to the bicarbonate ion, for baking soda, see Sodium bicarbonate. ...

All higher lifeforms require a subtle and complex electrolyte balance between the intracellular and extracellular milieu. In particular, the maintenance of precise osmotic gradients of electrolytes is important. Such gradients affect and regulate the hydration of the body, blood pH, and are critical for nerve and muscle function. Various mechanisms have evolved in living species that keep the concentrations of different electrolytes under tight control. In cell biology, molecular biology and related fields, the word intracellular means inside the cell. It is used in contrast to extracellular (outside the cell). ... In cell biology, molecular biology and related fields, the word extracellular means outside the cell. It is used in contrast to intracellular (inside the cell). ... An ion gradient is a concentration gradient of ions, it can be called an electrochemical potential gradient of ions across membranes. ... In chemistry, hydration is the condition of being combined with water. ... For other uses, see Blood (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see PH (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Nerve (disambiguation). ... For other uses of Muscles, see Muscles (disambiguation). ...

Both muscle tissue and neurons are considered electric tissues of the body. Muscles and neurons are activated by electrolyte activity between the extracellular fluid or interstitial fluid, and intracellular fluid. Electrolytes may enter or leave the cell membrane through specialized protein structures embedded in the plasma membrane called ion channels. For example, muscle contraction is dependent upon the presence of calcium (Ca2+), sodium (Na+), and potassium (K+). Without sufficient levels of these key electrolytes, muscle weakness or severe muscle contractions may occur. In some animals, including mammals, the two types of extracellular fluids are interstitial fluid and blood plasma. ... The cytosol (as opposed to cytoplasm, which also includes the organelles) is the internal fluid of the cell, and a large part of cell metabolism occurs here. ... Drawing of a cell membrane A component of every biological cell, the cell membrane (or plasma membrane) is a thin and structured bilayer of phospholipid and protein molecules that envelopes the cell. ... Ion channels are present in the membranes that surround all biological cells. ... A top-down view of skeletal muscle A muscle contraction (also known as a muscle twitch or simply twitch) occurs when a muscle fiber generates tension through the action of actin and myosin cross-bridge cycling. ...

Electrolyte balance is maintained by oral, or in emergencies, intravenous (IV) intake of electrolyte-containing substances, and is regulated by hormones, generally with the kidneys flushing out excess levels. In humans, electrolyte homeostasis is regulated by hormones such as antidiuretic hormone, aldosterone and parathyroid hormone. Serious electrolyte disturbances, such as dehydration and overhydration, may lead to cardiac and neurological complications and, unless they are rapidly resolved, will result in a medical emergency. For other uses, see Hormone (disambiguation). ... The kidneys are the organs that filter wastes (such as urea) from the blood and excrete them, along with water, as urine. ... Homeostasis (from Greek: ὅμος, homos, equal; and ιστημι, histemi, to stand lit. ... Antidiuretic hormone (ADH), or arginine vasopressin (AVP), is a peptide hormone produced by the hypothalamus, and stored in the posterior part of the pituitary gland. ... Aldosterone, is a steroid hormone (mineralocorticoid family) produced by the outer-section (zona glomerulosa) of the adrenal cortex in the adrenal gland, and acts on the kidney nephron to conserve sodium, secrete potassium,increase water retention, and increase blood pressure. ... RNA expression pattern Orthologs Human Mouse Entrez Ensembl Uniprot na Refseq Location Pubmed search Parathyroid hormone (PTH), or parathormone, is secreted by the parathyroid glands as a polypeptide containing 84 amino acids. ... Electrolyte disturbance refers to an abnormal change in the levels of electrolytes in the body. ... Dehydration (hypohydration) is the removal of water (hydro in ancient Greek) from an object. ... Water intoxication is a medical condition (also known as hyperhydration) in which an individuals intake of water is excessive. ... {{Otheruses4|the medical term|the Australian television series|Medical Emergenc an immediate threat to a persons life or long term health. ...


Measurement of electrolytes is a commonly performed diagnostic procedure, performed via blood testing with ion selective electrodes or urinalysis by medical technologists. The interpretation of these values is somewhat meaningless without analysis of the clinical history and is often impossible without parallel measurement of renal function. Electrolytes measured most often are sodium and potassium. Chloride levels are rarely measured except for arterial blood gas interpretation since they are inherently linked to sodium levels. One important test conducted on urine is the specific gravity test to determine the occurrence of electrolyte imbalance. Blood tests are laboratory tests done on blood to gain an appreciation of disease states and the function of organs. ... An ion selective electrode (ISE) is an electrode designed to respond to only one type of ion. ... A urinalysis (or UA) is an array of tests performed on urine and one of the most common methods of medical diagnosis. ... A medical technologist (MT) is a healthcare professional who performs diagnostic analytic tests on human body fluids such as blood, urine, sputum, stool, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), peritoneal fluid, pericardial fluid, and synovial fluid, as well as other specimens. ... The medical history of a patient (sometimes called anamnesis [1][2] ) is information gained by a physician by asking specific questions, either of the patient or of other people who know the person and can give suitable information (in this case, it is sometimes called heteroanamnesis). ... In medicine (nephrology) renal function is an indication of the state of the kidney and its role in physiology. ... Arterial blood gas measurement is a blood test that is performed to determine the concentration of oxygen, carbon dioxide and bicarbonate, as well as the pH, in the blood. ... Relative density (also known as specific gravity) is a measure of the density of a material. ... Electrolyte disturbance refers to an abnormal change in the levels of electrolytes in the body. ...

Sports drinks

Electrolytes are commonly found in sports drinks. In oral rehydration therapy, electrolyte drinks containing sodium and potassium salts replenish the body's water and electrolyte levels after dehydration caused by exercise, diaphoresis, diarrhea, vomiting or starvation. A sports drink is a beverage designed to help athletes rehydrate, as well as replenish electrolytes, sugar, and other nutrients, which can be depleted after strenuous training or competition. ... Oral Rehydration Therapy, or ORT, is a simple, cheap, and effective treatment for diarrhea caused by, e. ... Impact from a water drop causes an upward rebound jet surrounded by circular capillary waves. ... Dehydration (hypohydration) is the removal of water (hydro in ancient Greek) from an object. ... The term Exercise can refer to: Physical exercise such as running or strength training Exercise (options), the financial term for enacting and terminating a contract Category: ... Diaphoresis is excessive sweating commonly associated with shock and other medical emergency conditions. ... In medicine, diarrhea, also spelled diarrhoea (see spelling differences), refers to frequent loose or liquid bowel movements. ... Heaving redirects here. ... This article is about extreme malnutrition. ...

It is unnecessary to replace losses of sodium, potassium and other electrolytes during exercise since it is unlikely that a significant depletion the body's stores of these minerals will occur during normal training. However, in extreme exercising conditions over 5 or 6 hours (an Ironman or ultramarathon, for example) the consumption of a complex sports drink with electrolytes is recommended. Athletes who do not consume electrolytes under these conditions risk overhydration (or hyponatremia). [1]

Because sports drinks typically contain very high levels of sugar, they are not recommended for regular use by children. Water is considered the only essential beverage for children during exercise. Sports drinks are also not appropriate for replacing the fluid lost during diarrhea. Medicinal rehydration sachets and drinks are available to replace the key electrolyte ions lost. Dentists recommend that regular consumers of sports drinks observe precautions against tooth decay. This article is about sugar as food and as an important and widely-traded commodity. ... Types of teeth Molars are used for grinding up foods Carnassials are used for slicing food. ...

Electrolyte and sports drinks can be home-made by using the correct proportions of sugar, salt and water.[2]


Main article: electrolysis

When electrodes are placed in an electrolyte and a voltage is applied, the electrolyte will conduct electricity. Lone electrons normally cannot pass through the electrolyte; instead, a chemical reaction occurs at the cathode consuming electrons from the cathode, and another reaction occurs at the anode producing electrons to be taken up by the anode. As a result, a negative charge cloud develops in the electrolyte around the cathode, and a positive charge develops around the anode. The ions in the electrolyte move to neutralize these charges so that the reactions can continue and the electrons can keep flowing. In chemistry and manufacturing, electrolysis is a method of separating chemically bonded elements and compounds by passing an electric current through them. ... For other uses, see Electrode (disambiguation). ... International safety symbol Caution, risk of electric shock (ISO 3864), colloquially known as high voltage symbol. ... For other uses, see Electron (disambiguation). ... Diagram of a copper cathode in a Daniells cell. ... Diagram of a zinc anode in a galvanic cell. ...

For example, in a solution of ordinary salt (sodium chloride, NaCl) in water, the cathode reaction will be R-phrases 36 S-phrases none Flash point Non-flammable Related Compounds Other anions NaF, NaBr, NaI Other cations LiCl, KCl, RbCl, CsCl, MgCl2, CaCl2 Related salts Sodium acetate Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ...

2H2O + 2e → 2OH + H2

and hydrogen gas will bubble up; the anode reaction is This article is about the chemistry of hydrogen. ...

2H2O → O2 + 4H+ + 4e

and oxygen gas will be liberated. The positively charged sodium ions Na+ will move towards the cathode neutralizing the negative charge of OH there, and the negatively charged chlorine ions Cl will move towards the anode neutralizing the positive charge of H+ there. Without the ions from the electrolyte, the charges around the electrode would slow down continued electron flow; diffusion of H+ and OH through water to the other electrode takes longer than movement of the much more prevalent salt ions. This article is about the chemical element and its most stable form, or dioxygen. ... diffusion (disambiguation). ...

In other systems, the electrode reactions can involve the metals of the electrodes as well as the ions of the electrolyte.

Electrolytic conductors are used in electronic devices where the chemical reaction at a metal/electrolyte interface yields useful effects.

  • In batteries, two metals with different electron affinities are used as electrodes; electrons flow from one electrode to the other outside of the battery, while inside the battery the circuit is closed by the electrolyte's ions. Here the electrode reactions slowly use up the chemical energy stored in the electrolyte.
  • In some fuel cells, a solid electrolyte or proton conductor connects the plates electrically while keeping the hydrogen and oxygen fuel gases separated.
  • In electroplating tanks, the electrolyte simultaneously deposits metal onto the object to be plated, and electrically connects that object in the circuit.
  • In operation-hours gauges, two thin columns of mercury are separated by a small electrolyte-filled gap, and, as charge is passed through the device, the metal dissolves on one side and plates out on the other, causing the visible gap to slowly move along.
  • In electrolytic capacitors the chemical effect is used to produce an extremely thin 'dielectric' or insulating coating, while the electrolyte layer behaves as one capacitor plate.
  • In some hygrometers the humidity of air is sensed by measuring the conductivity of a nearly dry electrolyte.
  • Hot, softened glass is an electrolytic conductor, and some glass manufacturers keep the glass molten by passing a large current through it.

For other uses, see Battery. ... This article is about metallic materials. ... A fuel cell is an electrochemical device similar to a battery, but differing from the latter in that it is designed for continuous replenishment of the reactants consumed; i. ... A proton conductor is an electrolyte where movable hydrogen ions are the primary charge carriers. ... Electroplating is the process of using Davd lloyd current to coat an electrically conductive object with a relatively thin layer of metal. ... This article is about the element. ... Electrolytic capacitors An electrolytic capacitor is a type of capacitor typically with a larger capacitance per unit volume than other types, making them valuable in relatively high-current and low-frequency electrical circuits. ... A dielectric is a nonconducting substance, i. ... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... The interior of a Stevenson screen showing a motorized psychrometer Hygrometers are instruments used for measuring humidity. ...

See also

A strong electrolyte is a solute that completely, or almost completely, ionizes or dissociates in a solution. ... There are very few or no other articles that link to this one. ...

  Results from FactBites:
Electrolyte Disorders Information on Healthline (595 words)
An electrolyte disorder is an imbalance of certain ionized salts (i.e., bicarbonate, calcium, chloride, magnesium, phosphate, potassium, and sodium) in the blood.
Electrolytes are ionized molecules found throughout the blood, tissues, and cells of the body.
Electrolytes also facilitate the passage of fluid between and within cells through a process known as osmosis and play a part in regulating the function of the neuromuscular, endocrine, and excretory systems.
Patents in Class 361/505 (1963 words)
The present invention is directed to an electrolyte for use in very high voltage electrolytic capacitors and to an electrolytic capacitor impregnated with the electrolyte of the present invention for use in an implantable cardioverter de...
A non-aqueous electrolyte is disclosed, which comprises a non-aqueous solvent and a solute represented by the general formula(1): MBR 1 R 2 R 3 R 4, wherein M is an alkali metal atom or an ammonium group and R 1 to R 4 are each indepe...
An electrolytic capacitor of the present invention is so constituted that a capacitor element steeped with an electrolytic solution containing quaternary ammonia salts is accommodated in an armor case of which aperture is sealed with a s...
  More results at FactBites »



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