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Fabrication of Carbon, Gold, Platinum, Silver, and Mercury Ultramicroelectrodes with Controlled Geometry

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Department of Chemistry, McGill University, 801 Sherbrooke Street West, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3A 0B8
*E-mail: [email protected]. Tel: 514-398-3898. Fax: +1-514-398-3797.
Cite this: Anal. Chem. 2015, 87, 5, 2565–2569
Publication Date (Web):January 28, 2015
Copyright © 2015 American Chemical Society

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    A simple, fast, and reproducible method for the fabrication of disk ultramicroelectrodes (UMEs) with controlled geometry is reported. The use of prepulled soda-lime glass capillaries allows one to bypass the irreproducible torch-sealing and experimentally challenging tip-sharpening steps used in conventional fabrication protocols. A micron-sized electroactive wire is sealed inside this capillary producing UMEs with a highly reproducible geometry. Total fabrication time (1 h) and experimental difficulty are significantly reduced. Disk UMEs with various diameters and cores were fabricated, including carbon fiber (7 and 11 μm), gold (10 and 25 μm), platinum (10 and 25 μm), silver (25 μm), and mercury (25 μm). The ratio of the insulating sheath to the electroactive core of the UMEs was 2.5–3.6. Silver UMEs were also used to produce a Ag/AgCl microreference electrode. This general fabrication method can readily be applied to other electroactive cores and could allow any research group to produce high quality disk UMEs, which are a prerequisite for quantitative scanning electrochemical microscopy.

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