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Title: Advanced electrochemical analysis for complex electrode applications
Author: Zheng, Feng
ISNI:       0000 0004 7660 9250
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2019
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This thesis has investigated several complex situations that may be encountered in electrochemical studies. Three main situations have been examined, they include the formation of polymer films on electrode surfaces during measurements, a novel nanocatalyst modified electrode surfaces, and organised carbon nanotube (CNT) structures on electrode surfaces. These have been utilised for different electrochemical applications owing to their dissimilar properties. Voltammetric techniques of cyclic voltammetry (CV), square wave voltammetry (SWV) and Fourier transformed large amplitude ac voltammetry (FTACV) have been utilised to examine these reactions. Chapter 3 reports the investigation of catechol oxidation and subsequent polymerisation through crosslinking with D-glucosamine or chitosan. Hydrogel can be formed on the electrode surface during the process, which changes the viscosity of the solution and thus affects the diffusion of chemical species. This process has been examined by several voltammetric techniques. A further examination of the chemical system has also been conducted using FTACV for the first time. Chapter 4 describes the preparation of carbon microsphere supported molybdenum disulfide. The material has been utilised as electrocatalysts for hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) in acidic media, and the performance tested by traditional linear sweep voltammetry (LSV) and advanced FTACV techniques. The FTACV technique has been used for the first time for HER processes. In addition, the synthesised particles have also been used for thermal catalytic decomposition of hydrogen sulfide, which shows a significant improvement in the conversion rate over conventional examples. Chapter 5 demonstrates the direct growth of vertically aligned CNT forests on a gold electrode. The electrochemical response of the fabricated electrode has also been examined with ferrocyanide as the redox species. Furthermore, the immobilisation of anthraquinone onto CNT forest has been attempted. The fabricated electrode was utilised as a pH sensor via CV and SWV, and both indicates a well correlated pH-potential relationship in the pH range of 2 to 12. The sensor has also been assessed by the FTACV technique.
Supervisor: Fisher, Adrian Sponsor: Schlumberger Gould Research Campus for Research Excellence and Technological Enterprise (CREATE) programme in Singapore
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Electrochemical ; Electrode materials ; Hydrogel ; Molybdenum Disulfide ; Carbon Nanotube ; Sensor ; Voltammetry