In situ Electrochemical Cell: Product Presentation IS-EC-AP

Three-electrode-cell for electrochemical experiments under ambient pressure inert atmospheres

Since more than 10 years SPECS sells an in situ (IS) three electrode electrochemical cell (EC), that works under inert gas atmosphere at ambient pressure (AP) conditions. Thus it is named IS-EC-AP and can be coupled via a buffer chamber to any vacuum system. We have reviewed the design recently for easier and more flexible operation. The cell itself is a 6-way cross made from glas with KF flanges. The sample is transferred is realized horizontally by a transfer rod (port 1, left) into and out of the stainless steel buffer chamber (port 2, right) coupled via a gate valve.

Setup and operation

On the top (port 3) there is a 4-way port made from Teflon, connected to a tube for laminar inert gas flow (gas in), a connection to a dosimat for washing the sample surface, a tube with a nozzle to blow-off liquids from the surface and a spare port.

At the bottom there is a two-way outlet made from Teflon, one for the laminar inert gas flow (gas out), connected via a tube to a washing bottle and a funnel-type sink with a valve connected via another tube to a waste bottle.

The electrochemical insert consists of two Teflon parts, the electrolyte reservoir (left) and the sample stage (right), that are connected to the other two horizontal ports (port 5 and 6).

They are clamped together with the sample inside, connecting and sealing the liquid reservoir, that also contains the counter and reference electrode to the sample surface.

Sample Transfer and Operation of the three-electrode electrochemical cell insert

Sample Transfer and Operation of the three-electrode electrochemical cell insert.

The sample is then inserted into the sample stage, 

closing the contact to the BNC connector for the working electrode on the outside. A potentiostat is connected here for electrochemical experiments.

Then the transfer rod is retracted and the cell is closed, by pressing the electrolyte reservoir against the sample stage and fixing it

The five-way connector on the outside allows for connection of an inlet and an outlet tube for the liquid electrolyte, as well as the insertion and electrical connection of a reference and counter electrode to the potentiostat. One port is spare.

Now the cell is ready for electrochemical experiments. Because of the inert gas and the construction entirely made from Teflon and glas parts, the experiments are extremely clean, in case the electrodes and the electrolyte quality allows for that.

Once the experiment is finished, the electrolyte reservoir can be emptied and the cell can be released from the sample stage. The free access to the sample surface allows now for cleaning and drying of the sample surface and back transfer from inert gas to vacuum without any contact with moisture or air for further analysis. By this even reaction sensitive electrochemical systems, like Lithiumionbattery systems can be treated and analyzed in a clean way. After analysis the sample can be transferred back for the next electrochemical reaction step.

IS-EC-AP is a very versatile three-electrode electrochemical cell, that allows for a wide variety of experiments. In case of interest please contact sales for further discussions of your application.