Journal article

Electrochemical behavior of ammonia at Ni/Ni(OH)2 electrode

The electrochemical oxidation of ammonia was investigated on a Ni/Ni(OH)(2) electrode prepared by potential cycling of a Ni electrode in 1 M NaClO4. It was found that oxidation of ammonia is strongly pH dependent and proceeds mainly at pH values above 7. This indicates that NH3 rather than NH4+ is oxidized on nickel electrodes. Oxidation of ammonia occurs in the potential region of Ni(II)/Ni(III) redox activity resulting in formation of a clear peak. Ni/Ni(OH)(2) is not deactivated during ammonia oxidation even at high ammonia concentrations. A considerable fraction of the ammonia was oxidized to nitrate (11%), while the rest were gaseous nitrogen compounds. It is postulated that nitrogen was formed via a mechanism involving direct electron transfer from ammonia to the anode whereas the formation of nitrate involved oxygen transfer from water to an ammonia molecule. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


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