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Extraction of Aluminium

Extraction of Aluminium

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Extraction of Aluminium

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  1. Extraction of Aluminium Aluminium is extracted using electrolysis because it is too reactive to be extracted using carbon.

  2. Raw materials Ore – bauxite – aluminium oxide The ore is dissolved in cryolite to lower the melting point.

  3. The electrolysis cell Carbon anode Molten aluminium oxide Oxygen bubbles cathode Molten aluminium Steel case Temperature 900 C

  4. Reactions in the cell • At the cathode Al3+ + 3e- Al • At the anode 2O2- O2 + 4e- • The oxygen formed reacts with the carbon anodes to form carbon dioxide. • They have to be replaced periodically.

  5. Cost Extracting aluminium is expensive because of the high cost of electricity. Extraction takes place where there is a cheap source of electricity e.g. hydroelectric power