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In the reaction between zinc and iodine, zinc iodide is formed. Which is being oxidised?
(A) Zinc ions
(B) Iodide ions
(C) Zinc atom
(D) Iodine

seo-qna
Last updated date: 19th Jun 2024
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Answer
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Hint: In terms of electrons, the oxidised atom is the one which has donated the electrons while the reduced is the one which has accepted the electrons. Usually, the s block elements act as donors for the acceptor p block elements.

Complete step by step solution:
First, let us understand the concept of oxidation and reduction and then see the reaction.
The oxidation in terms of electrons can be defined as the process of loss of electrons from an element and reduction is the process of gain of electrons. The species that has given electrons is said to be oxidised while the one that has gained the electrons is said to be reduced.
In the reaction between zinc and iodine where zinc iodide is formed. The reaction can be written as -
$Zn + {I_2} \to Zn{I_2}$
Here, the Zinc is metal and we know that metals have the tendency to donate. The metals can easily lose the valence electrons because they are not so tightly bound.
The iodine is a halogen and needs one electron to complete its octet. Thus, it will be highly electronegative and can easily gain the electron.
So, in this reaction, the Zn metal has given two electrons which are taken by iodine atoms, one electron by each $I$ atom.
Thus, the Zinc metal is oxidised while the Iodine is reduced.

So, the option (C) is the correct answer.

Note: We have given the answer Zinc atom and not Zinc ions. There is a difference between the two. The Zinc atom is the neutral Zinc atom that does not have any charge on it. It has not still donated any electrons. The Zinc ions mean when there is a charge on the atom-like it has donated the electron in reaction, it will have +2 charge for two-electron donation.