Combining SECM and AFM to Probe the Redoxmer-Electrode Interface

A combined imaging approach shows heterogeneous film formation and electron transfer kinetics on graphitic electrodes

Scientific Achievement

Dialkoxybenzene catholytes form electron transfer-limiting thin films preferentially on the basal plane of graphitic electrodes.

Significance and Impact

A new combined scanning probe approach was developed to determine how redox active materials interact with electrode surfaces. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) revealed interfacial film formation on graphitic electrodes, and scanning electrochemical microscopy (SECM) quantified the distribution of electron transfer rates associated with these heterogeneous interfaces.

Research Details

  • Sterically unprotected C7 catholyte shows more filming and kinetic limitations than the bulkier C1.
  • Comparing basal plane and edge plane electrodes showed that catholyte films form exclusively on basal planes, although the films are mostly reversible upon oxidation.

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DOI: 10.1039/d0ta00836b

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