Surface preparation of glassy carbon electrodes
MetadataShow full item record
Recent work on glassy carbon electrodes for various applications is reviewed. Activation of glassy carbon electrodes by different types of polishing, heat treatment, and electrochemical methods yields enhanced rates of electron transfer. Characterization of different glassy carbon surfaces by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy shows that polished and electrochemically pretreated surfaces contain more oxygen on the surface than do unactivated surfaces; much of this oxygen is associated with phenolic groups. Causes of activation, characterization of glassy carbon by spectroscopic methods, and the role of surface cleanliness are summarized. For simple electron-transfer reactions, removal of contaminants from the electrode surface is important. For proton-coupled electrode reactions, specific interactions of reactants with catalytic groups created on the surface during polishing tend to play an important role in electrode activation.