Answer :

Sodium hydroxide is generally prepared commercially by the electrolysis of aqueous NaCl (brine) in Castner-Kellner cell by using mercury cathode and carbon anode.

Sodium metal which is discharged at the cathode combines with mercury to form sodium amalgam.

Cl2 gas is evolved at the anode.

At cathode:

At anode: 2Cl- Cl2 + 2e-

The sodium amalgam thus obtained is treated with water to form sodium hydroxide and hydrogen gas.

Note: Caster- Kellner cell is used in the manufacture of sodium hydroxide (NaOH). The working of Caster Kellner process is given below:

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