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Thursday, July 10, 2008
This demonstrates how a battery operates (the reverse process of this would be called "electroplating"). Basically, there is 2 electrodes of two different electronegativity values in an ionic solution and seperated by a semi-permeable membrane that contains aqueous electrolytes or ionic salt solutions. Based on the differences in electronegativities of the electrodes and the surface area of the electrodes exposed to the ionic electrolytes in the water, the battery will contain a relatively constant voltage potential until some chemical equilibrium is reached in the metal-water solution and then the battery cell is dead. In some batteries, the application of a voltage to the electrodes will recharge the battery by making the chemical process slowly go in reverse, while in others it can causes the battery to overheat and explode.