Oxidising Agents and Reduction Agents

  1. In a redox reaction, compound that is reduced is oxidizing agent. An oxidising agent is substance which oxidises something else.
  2. Inversely, compound that is oxidised is reducing agent. A reducing agent reduces something else.


  1. In this reaction, iron(III) oxide is reduced. Therefore it is the oxidising agent. It has oxidised carbon monoxide to become carbon dioxide.
  2. The carbon monoxide is oxidised. Therefore it act as the reducing agent. It has reduced iron(III) oxide to become iron metal.

In this reaction:

  1. copper(II) oxide is reduced, hence it is the oxidising agent.
  2. carbon is oxidised, hence it is the reducing agent.


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