Ion conductor question

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  • Thread starter girts
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  • #1
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I am interested can you please point out, are there any ion conductors (electrolytes i assume they are called) that are comparable in their resistance to copper at room temperature? I am thinking about both liquid or solid conductors here.

Also I was wondering is it possible to make continuity in current between a copper wire and an ion conductor, what happens at the connection? Does electrons from copper simply enter the electrolyte and from there on an ionic current begins or what exactly?
I ask this because I want to experiment with two wires that are moving in the same direction in homogeneous axial magnetic field, only one of them carries current in one direction but the other should be the return wire, but if they are both made out of metals that conduct electric current via electrons then the B field pushes the electrons in the same direction in both wires although I need one wire to have current in one direction and the other in the other one.


Thanks.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
berkeman
Mentor
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I am interested can you please point out, are there any ion conductors (electrolytes i assume they are called) that are comparable in their resistance to copper at room temperature? I am thinking about both liquid or solid conductors here.

Also I was wondering is it possible to make continuity in current between a copper wire and an ion conductor, what happens at the connection? Does electrons from copper simply enter the electrolyte and from there on an ionic current begins or what exactly?
I ask this because I want to experiment with two wires that are moving in the same direction in homogeneous axial magnetic field, only one of them carries current in one direction but the other should be the return wire, but if they are both made out of metals that conduct electric current via electrons then the B field pushes the electrons in the same direction in both wires although I need one wire to have current in one direction and the other in the other one.


Thanks.
Can you compare and contrast the conductivity of metals wi6th strong ionic solutions? Google is your friend...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conductivity_(electrolytic)#Strong_electrolytes
 
  • #3
Henryk
Gold Member
260
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I am interested can you please point out, are there any ion conductors (electrolytes i assume they are called) that are comparable in their resistance to copper at room temperature?
Not even close. Yes, there are liquid and solid ionic conductors but their electrical conductivity is much, much less than that of any metal.
Actually, you can have ions in gas, still the conductivity is not that great.
Also I was wondering is it possible to make continuity in current between a copper wire and an ion conductor, what happens at the connection?
At the interface between electron and ionic conductor you have to have a charge exchange, i.e. either ionize neutral molecule or neutralize an ion. In either case, you essentially end up with electrolysis.
I am not quite sure what you want to accomplish with the two wires moving in magnetic field. The force on the wire depends on the direction of the current, not the direction of the current carriers. The same goes for the induced EMF.
On the other hand, if you really want to have mobile carriers of different signs, try semiconductors: one n-type and the other p-type. Semiconductors will not be as good conductors as copper but way better than ionic conductors.
 

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