Electrochemical Current Noise on Aluminum Microelectrodes
Hebert, Kurt R
Aluminum disk microelectrodes were used to investigate electrochemical current noise in pH 8.8 borate buffer. The current noise spectra, expressed in terms of the current spectral density, had a characteristic two‐plateau structure in the experimental bandwidth of 0.05–50 Hz, were potential‐independent, and increased proportionally to electrode area. Injection of NaCl solution near the electrode surface, at potentials below that of the onset of pitting corrosion, caused 0.1–1 Hz current fluctuations to appear. From the frequency and area dependence of the current spectral density in the chloride‐free solution, it was concluded that the noise arose from a number of discrete, approximately evenly distributed voltage noise sources positioned electrically in series with the inner barrier layer of the oxide film. A mathematical model for the current noise was developed which described a physical mechanism for noise production based on fluctuations in the widths of cracks or pores in the outer part of the surface film. The model was consistent with the observed area and frequency dependence of the current spectral density, suggesting that the physical process it described is a possible mechanism of noise generation. It could not be determined whether the noise sources were isolated defects or flaws, or pores in an outer precipitated portion of the oxide film.
This article is from Journal of the Electrochemical Society 146 (1999): 502–509, doi:10.1149/1.1391635. Posted with permission.