Electrolytes are also conductors of electricity. The electrical conductance of an electrolyte is due to the ions it contains. The greater the concentration of ions, the higher will be the conductance. To compare the conductivity of different solutions, the size of the electrodes and the distance between the electrodes must be standardized. It has been found that the resistance offered by a solution is directly proportional to the distance between the electrodes and inversely proportional to the cross-sectional area of the solution between the electrodes. The resistance R is thus given by:
R = p (I/a)
Where ‘I’ is the distance between the electrodes ‘a’ is the area of cross section and ‘p’ is the constant of proportionality known as the specific resistance. When
I — 1cm, a = 1 sq.cm then p = R. Hence the specific resistance is the resistance in ohms of a solution kept between electrodes 1 cm apart and area between electrodes being one square centimeter.
The electrolytic conductance (L) of a system is the reciprocal of its resistance (R)