Electrochemical Cells Computer Simulation: Voltaic Cells: Zn Cu Ag

Electrochemical Cells Computer Simulation: voltaic cells Zn Cu Ag OLD FLASH-Based

©2009 Greenbowe  Chemistry Education Instructional Resources  


A new HTML5-based computer simulation is being developed for this computer simulation.

Computer animations of a standard cell comprising of two half-cells: zinc metal electrode in 1.0 M ZnSO​4 solution, a copper metal electrode in a 1.0 M CuSO4 solution, and a connecting salt bridge.   The electrodes are connected to a voltmeter.  E°cell = +1.10 Volts.  

A guided-inquiry worksheet accompanies this computer simulation.  Download the file from the menu.

  The URL is  http://introchem.chem.okstate.edu/DCICLA/voltaicCell20.html

Curriculum Notes 

Computer animations (NEW BLENDER-based) representing the half-reactions occurring at the particle level at the electrodes (anode and cathode) of a zinc/copper electrochemical cell: a Voltaic cell   beta versions  (drafts)

Zn|Zn2+   oxidation half-reaction at the zinc electrode   https://vimeo.com/220550690            

Cu2+|Cu  reduction half-reaction at the copper electrode   https://vimeo.com/220550267

animation of the migration of ions in the salt-bridge  https://vimeo.com/220548484

animation of the movement of electrons in a wire   https://vimeo.com/220550589

Learning Objectives
1. Given a diagram of a simple electrochemical cell involving two metal electrodes and the corresponding solution of the metal ions identify: the site of oxidation reduction, the anode, the cathode, movement of electrons, migration of ions, the chemical equation representing the cell reaction.
2. Calculate the emf of a cell, given a table of standard reduction potentials. 
3. Draw a particle diagram representing the dynamic events occurring at each electrode and in the salt-bridge.


1.  Greenbowe, T.J. (1994).   An interactive multimedia software program for exploring electrochemical celIs.  Journal of Chemical Education71(7), 555.

2.  Sanger, M.J. and Greenbowe, T.J. (1997).  “Student Misconceptions in Electrochemistry: Current Flow in Electrolyte Solutions and the Salt Bridge.” Journal of Chemical Education, 74(7), 819-823.

3. Sanger, M. J. and Greenbowe, T.J.  (1997).   “Common Student Misconceptions in Electrochemistry: Galvanic, Electrolytic, and Concentration Cells.” Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 34(4), 377-398.

4. Sanger, M.J. and Greenbowe, T.J. (1999).  “An Analysis of College of Chemistry Textbooks as Sources of Misconception and Errors in Electrochemistry.”  Journal of Chemical Education, 76(6), 853-860.

5. de Jong O. and Treagust D. F., (2002), The teaching and learning of electrochemistry, in Gilbert J. G., de Jong O., Justi R., Treagust D. F. and van Driel J. H. (eds.), Chemical education: towards research based practice, Dordrecht: Kluwer, pp. 317-338. 

5.  Abraham, M.; Gelder, J.; Greenbowe, T. (2007).  During Class Inventions and Computer Lab Activities for First and Second Semester General Chemistry. Hayden-McNeil: Plymouth, MI.


© Copyright 2012 Email: Randy Sullivan, University of Oregon Chemistry Department and UO Libraries Interactive Media Group