What is the final oxidation number of carbon in the following chemical reaction?

6CO2 + 6H2O -> C6H12O6 + 6O2

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Correct Answer: **C.** *0*

In the equation, carbon is used from carbon dioxide to form glucose, C6H12O6. The final form of carbon is in glucose. In this compound, the oxygens each have an oxidation number of -2 and the hydrogen also have a fixed oxidation number of +1 each. Therefore, the sum of hydrogen’s oxidation numbers is +12 and the sum of oxygen’s oxidation numbers is -12. Since glucose is a neutral compound the sum of all the oxidation numbers of all the elements in the compound must be equal to zero. So, carbon must have an oxidation number of 0 because the sum of the hydrogen and oxygen oxidation numbers is already equal to zero.

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