# Electrolysis of molten sodium iodide

• Electrodes: Zinc electrodes
• Electrolyte: molten sodium iodide

I know that at the cathode, sodium metal will be formed because only sodium ions are present for reduction.

At the anode, originally iodine should be formed with inert electrodes such as graphite. However, since zinc electrodes are used, and zinc metal is a stronger reducing agent than iodide, hence zinc should be oxidised into zinc ions.

My question is: what will be the reaction occurring at the anode? Will zinc ions or iodine be formed? Or is this case of electrolysis even possible?

• Wow, that's quite an exotic system. However, looks like it should work, and your reasoning is right. Zinc will be oxidized. – Ivan Neretin May 24 '16 at 15:22
• I'm curious why you would want to use Zn as the anode in this system if you are trying to electrolyze NaI. You answered the question yourself -- use graphite if you going for electrolysis. – Qubit1028 May 24 '16 at 20:54