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Shipwrecks, Corrosion And Conservation Essay

4383 words - 18 pages

6: Option - Shipwrecks, Corrosion and Conservation
6.1: The chemical composition of the ocean implies its potential role as an electrolyte

Identify the origins of the minerals in oceans as:

leaching by rainwater from terrestrial environments
hydrothermal vents in mid-ocean ridges

Identify - recognise and name

There are 2 major sources of the salts in seawater:

Leaching by rain and ground water.
Dissolution of salts by water passing through hydrothermal vents.


The main ions that are dissolved as rainwater percolates through the soil and makes its way into creeks and rivers are Na, Ca, Mg, Cl and SO4.
Water that seeps down into underground aquifers dissolves greater quantities of these ions and under certain conditions (slightly lower pH than normal) picks up significant amounts of Hydrogen Carbonate (by dissolving carbonate)
Small amounts of nitrate and phosphate are also dissolved: these result from decay of plant and animal matter.
Although leaching of salts from the ground is a natural process, it has been significantly increased by human activities such as clear felling of forests, land clearing for pastoral pursuits and cultivation for crop growing.
Some underground aquifers pick up high concentrations of sodium chloride (from the many salt deposits that exist there), and these carry large amounts of salt to the oceans.


Mid-ocean ridges (often containing fissures or cracks in the rock) exist near the Earth's crust.
Seawater is able to percolate down these fissures and come close to the up-welling magma and so the water is heated to high temperatures at high pressures.
This hot water is forced back into the ocean through other fissures in the form of hot springs.
As this hot water passes through these cracks it dissolves ionic substance from the rocks.
These releases of hot water back to the ocean are called HYDROTHERMAL VENTS.
When the hot water from hydrothermal vents meets cold ocean water, many of the salts crystallise out of solution and settle as mineral deposits on the ocean floor.

Outline the role of electron transfer in oxidation-reduction reactions

Outline - sketch in general terms; indicate the main features of

Magnesium reacting with chlorine is an oxidation/reduction reaction. This involves electron transfer:

Mg  Mg2+ + 2é [O] is loss of electrons

Cl2 + 2é Cl [R] is gain of electrons

Identify that oxidation-reduction reactions can occur when ions are free to move in liquid electrolytes

Identify - recognise and name

Electron transfer reactions can occur in electrolytes where ions are free to move.

Describe the work of Galvani, Volta, Davy and Faraday in increasing understanding of electron transfer reactions

Describe - provide characteristics and features

Process information from secondary sources to outline and analyse the impact of the...

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