What is #"nascent oxygen"#, and how does it relate to potassium permanganate?

1 Answer
Sep 10, 2017

Answer:

#"Nascent oxygen"# is a bit of an old-fashioned term......

Explanation:

But you really just need to heat up #"potassium permanganate"#: oxygen (as oxide) is oxidized, and manganese is reduced......

#MnO_4^(-) +4H^(+) + 3e^(-) rarrMnO_2(s) + 2H_2O# #(i)#

#O^(2-) rarr 1/2O_2(g) + 2e^(-)# #(ii)#

And so take #2xx(i)+3xx(ii)#

#2MnO_4^(-) +underbrace(8H^(+) +3O^(2-))_(3H_2O+2H^+) + 6e^(-)rarr2MnO_2(s) + 4H_2O+ 3/2O_2(g) + 6e^(-)#

And we cancel out common reagents.....

#2MnO_4^(-) +2H^+rarr2MnO_2(s) + H_2O+ 3/2O_2(g)#

Charge and mass are balanced as is required.......

We could look at this another way, and consider the decomposition of (shortlived!) permanganic acid:

#2HMnO_4rarr2MnO_2(s) + H_2O+ 3/2O_2(g)#