How to cause a potential difference between two steel electrodes

Feb 2014

I am a civil engineering student currently starting a project on electro-kinetic remediation with no external power supply.

I have two connected steel electrodes, one placed in copper sulphate solution and one placed in just water.

They are placed either side of a clay sample spiked with copper sulphate also, the idea being that a potential difference between the two electrodes will cause the disassociated copper ions to migrate towards the cathode.

Here is where I am stuck, I am unsure how a potential difference is generated between the electrodes. I am aware that it is to do with the corrosion of the electrodes and a difference in electrolyte concentration but not sure how.

Any help would be appreciated.. :confused: