Several versions of the laws can be found in textbooks and the scientific literature. The most common statements resemble the following:
For an element the equivalent weight is the quantity that combines with or replaces 1.00797 grams (g) of hydrogen or 7.9997 g of oxygen; or, the weight of an element that is liberated in an electrolysis (chemical reaction caused by an electric current) by the passage of 96,500 coulombs of electricity. The equivalent weight of an element is its gram atomic weight divided by its valence (combining power). Some equivalent weights are: silver (Ag), 107.868 g; magnesium (Mg), 24.312/2 g; aluminum (Al), 26.9815/3 g; sulfur (S, in forming a sulfide), 32.064/2 g. For compounds that function as oxidizing or reducing agents (compounds that act as acceptors or donors of electrons), the equivalent weight is the gram molecular weight divided by the number of electrons lost or gained by each molecule; e.g., potassium permanganate (KMnO4) in acid solution, 158.038/5 g; potassium dichromate (K2Cr2O7), 294.192/6 g; and sodium thiosulfate (Na2S2O3·5H2O), 248.1828/1 g. For all oxidizing and reducing agents (elements or compounds) the equivalent weight is the weight of the substance that is associated with the loss or gain of 6.023 × 10^23 electrons. The equivalent weight of an acid or base for neutralization reactions or of any other compound that acts by double decomposition is the quantity of the compound that will furnish or react with or be equivalent to 1.00797 g of hydrogen ion or 17.0074 g of hydroxide ion; e.g., hydrochloric acid (HCl), 36.461 g; sulfuric acid (H2SO4), 98.078/2 g; sodium hydroxide (NaOH), 40 g; sodium carbonate (Na2CO3), 105.9892/ 2 g. The equivalent weight of a substance may vary with the type of reaction it undergoes. Thus, potassium permanganate reacting by double decomposition has an equivalent weight equal to its gram molecular weight, 158.038/1 g; as an oxidizing agent under different circumstances it may be reduced to the manganate ion (MnO42-), to manganese dioxide (MnO2), or to the manganous ion (Mn2+), with the equivalent weights of 158.038/1 g, 158.038/3 g, and 158.038/5 g, respectively. The number of equivalent weights of any substance dissolved in one litre of solution is called the normality of that solution.
Faraday's laws can be summarized by
Note that M/z is the same as the equivalent weight of the substance altered.
For Faraday's first law, M, F, and z are constants, so that the larger the value of Q the larger m will be.
For Faraday's second law, Q, F, and z are constants, so that the larger the value of M/z (equivalent weight) the larger m will be.
In the simple case of constant-current electrolysis,
and then to
In the more complicated case of a variable electrical current, the total charge Q is the electric current I() integrated over time :
Here t is the total electrolysis time. Please note that tau is used as the current I is a function of tau.