# In the equation, 2Al + 2Fe^(3+) + 3O^(2-) -> 2Fe + 2Al^(3+) + 3O^(2-)m which element has been reduced?

Jan 25, 2016

$F {e}^{3 +} + 3 {e}^{-} \rightarrow F e$

Ferric ion has been REDUCED.

#### Explanation:

Reduction involves a formal GAIN of electrons. Oxidation involves a loss of electrons. In the reaction above, clearly ferric ion, $F {e}^{3 +}$, has been REDUCED.

The correct reaction is:

$A l + F {e}^{3 +} \rightarrow F e + A {l}^{3 +}$

This occurs because aluminum is a more active metal than iron. Note that in this respect, the aluminum acts as a sacrificial anode, which is a very important strategy for the prevention of corrosion. Corrosion of structural steel is thermodynamically downhill; of course here, corrosion occurs to the aluminum and not the structural steel.