Cobalt as a catalyst

SS5.2 How do transition metal ions act as catalysts?

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Hydrogen peroxide can oxidise 2,3-dihydroxybutanedioate ions to carbon dioxide, methanoate ions and water. The reaction occurs but very slowly even when heated. Pink Cobalt 2+ ions catalyse this reaction and in the process are themselves oxidised to green Cobalt 3+ ions and then regenerated to form pink Cobalt +2 ions at the end.

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For f urther information see Salters Advanced Chemistry, 2000, Activities and Assessment Pack, Second Edition, ISBN 0 435 631217