Decomposition Reactions


Binary decomposition is when a binary compound breaks down into its component elements:

Binary decomposition is often accomplished by electrolysis (a process in which an electric current is passed through an ionic compound that has been liquefied). The compound will separate into its component elements. One element will accumulate at the positive electrode; the other element will accumulate at the negative electrode.
Two Special Cases (Tertiary Compounds)

1. All chlorates decompose when heated into oxygen gas and a chloride.

2. All carbonates decompose when heated into carbon dioxide gas and an oxide.

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