What Is an Activity Series in Chemistry?


Quick Answer

In chemistry, an activity series is a list of substances ranked by their relative activity. This series is helpful in determining oxidation numbers in oxidation-reduction reactions as well as predicting the products of metal displacement reactions.

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What Is an Activity Series in Chemistry?
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Full Answer

An activity series is often used in determining the direction of a redox reaction, which is a reaction in which the oxidation states of atoms are changed in the reactants and products. Oxidation is a loss of electrons, which represents an increase in the oxidation state of a molecule, atom or ion; reduction is a gain in electrons, which represents a decrease of the oxidation state.

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