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Three phase junction – a microreactor for direct electrochemical nanostructured material deposition

Joanna Niedziolka-Jonsson ,  Marcin Opallo 

Polish Academy of Sciences, Institute of Physical Chemistry, Kasprzaka 44/52, Warszawa 01-224, Poland


In recent years, a lot of attention has been devoted to the fabrication of well-designed nanostructured materials [1] of which conducting polymers constitute a quite large group [2]. Their unique properties as low-dimensional conductors with highly exposed surface area, make them useful for different applications. Nowadays, conducting nanostructured polymers seem to be a promising material for chemical and biological sensors or photovoltaic cells and batteries [2,3]. For this reason the importance of the development of new material preparation methods cannot be overestimated. Nanostructured conducting polymer already have been prepared by electrospinning, polymer-template electrochemical synthesis and interfacial polymerization [2]. Recently, microstructured polymers were electrodeposited on a solid support next to the boundary of two immiscible liquids [4].

In this communication a three phase junction microreactor is employed for direct electrochemical conducting polymer nanostripe deposition. In these studies an ITO electrode is immersed into two immiscible liquids. The aqueous phase contains dissolved salt whereas the organic phase is unsupported, namely it consists exclusively of monomer molecules in a hydrophobic polar solventThe electrochemical generation of monomer radical cations is followed by ion transfer across the liquid|liquid interface in order to keep neutrality in the organic phase and facilitates the formation of polymer chainsIt is shown that the thickness of the electrogenerated stripes depends on the hydrophobic-hydrophilic properties of the anions present in the aqueous phase, the viscosity of the organic phase and the deposition time and can be down to 100 nm.

[1] G.A. Ozin, A.C. Arsenault “Nanochemistry. A Chemical Approach to Nanomaterials“RCS 2005

[2] J. Song, D. Han, L. Guo, L. Niu, Nanotechnology, 17 (2006) 824.

[3] L. Liang, J. Liu, C.F. Windisch, G.J. Exarhos, Y. Lihn, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 41 (2002) 3665.

[4] E. Bak, M.L. Donten, M. Donten, Z. Stojek, Electrochem. Commun., 7 (2005) 1098.


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Presentation: Poster at SMCBS'2007 International Workshop, by Joanna Niedziolka-Jonsson
See On-line Journal of SMCBS'2007 International Workshop

Submitted: 2007-09-04 15:21
Revised:   2009-06-07 00:44