Sciencemadness Discussion Board

What electrode to use for sodium metal cell?

Triflic Acid - 21-8-2021 at 19:01

Am going to run a synthesis of sodium from a paper. The paper uses a platinum wire electrode for both anode and cathode. Only have one platinum plated titanium electrode. So, what metal should I use for the cathode? Also, it would be nice if someone could tell me where to find said metal.

macckone - 21-8-2021 at 22:53

Need more information, but generally nickel or graphite is used in commercial molten salt applications.
If you are using a lower temperature eutectic, you might be able to use stainless steel or titanium.

When asking for advice, it is usually good practice to at least post a reference to the paper in question.
Or as much information about the procedure as possible.

Triflic Acid - 22-8-2021 at 07:07

Room temp, sodium chloride, in an organic solvent of propylene carbonate. The paper is called ELECTRODEPOSITION OF THE ALKALI METALS FROM PROPYLENE CARBONATE
I think I'll go with stainless steel as the electrode. I'll just "borrow" some from the kitchen utensils. No one will notice :P

macckone - 22-8-2021 at 09:19

For that stainless steel is fine.

metalresearcher - 22-8-2021 at 11:19

Unlike aqueous solutions, electrolyzing molten lye or NaCl solution just needs simple carbon anode and stainless steel cathode. When electrolyzing lye, even stainless steel anode suffices.
But watch out, lye of over 300 C is very nasty stuff, use a full face shield and leather gloves and a leather apron !