Aluminum and iron(III) reaction

  1. I was not expecting there to be a reaction between aluminum metal and a solution of iron chloride. I thought the aluminum would be oxidized and the iron reduced. What is the reaction that is occurring that is creating hydrogen gas on the surface of the aluminum? I know it has to do with aluminum reacting with the hydronium ions in solution but I can't come up with a balanced equation because i don't know what happens to the oxygen from the water. Thanks.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. SteamKing

    SteamKing 8,622
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
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    Perhaps you should do some research on iron (ferric) chloride.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iron(III)_chloride

    When it is dissolved in water, it makes an acidic solution. This solution is commonly used as a cheap etchant for making home-made circuit boards. If the solution is strong enough, it will etch metals like aluminum.
     
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